[GRASS-dev] Making start of GRASS GIS easier for newcomers

Markus Neteler neteler at osgeo.org
Thu Jan 22 02:06:49 PST 2015

On Thu, Jan 22, 2015 at 10:45 AM, Margherita Di Leo <diregola at gmail.com> wrote:
> I understand that for some users GRASS looks strange at first sight, because
> I'm aware that nearly nobody reads the manual *before* trying to start a new
> software.

Yes, confirmed...

> Because humans work like this, at first they want to try, and
> later, if the process of natural curiosity is supported by positive feedback
> of experience, they keep on going, learn new stuff, read the manual etc.

Right, this was my point.

> What I don't understand here is how an empty lat lon location would help in
> this.

Well, the idea is to let the user *open* the software.
If you open Libreoffice writer | Word, you get an empty text document
(often in letter size, argh).
If you open QGIS, you are in QGIS (likewise other GIS).

Why not also GRASS (optionally)? And in this case, latlong is the
compromise SRS.

> If the purpose is to allow the user to explore the software without any
> previous knowledge

In the first place I was referring to people who come from other GIS.
Especially those will not first read the manual because they'll claim
to know enough about GIS.

> (well actually something can be done also here, we could
> create a "getting started" video)

Please no :-)

> why not allowing the user to double click
> on their map and open grass from it. This would not need any change in the
> grass structure itself, it could just be a "demo". I think to a script in
> python that reads the info from a file (gdalinfo), creates a demo location,
> opens grass and import the file.

Still you have the welcome screen barrier here and no direct
(optional) access to the main menu of the software.


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