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

Anna Petrášová kratochanna at gmail.com
Thu Jan 22 07:27:06 PST 2015

On Thu, Jan 22, 2015 at 9:41 AM, Martin Landa <landa.martin at gmail.com>

> Hi,
> 2015-01-22 9:48 GMT+01:00 Markus Metz <markus.metz.giswork at gmail.com>:
> > A suggestion for a compromise:
> >
> > Have a minimal welcome screen that says something like
> > "Starting GRASS GIS in location X, mapset Y"
> > nothing else, no list of all the available locations and mapsets
> >
> > Only two buttons: OK, Change
> > Make OK the default, Change will bring up the current welcome screen.
> >
> > The user has then just to hit enter and GRASS is running. This would
> > reduce the (confusing) amount of information on the current welcome
> > screen. It would also give more space for a little graphic ;-)
> >
> > Location and mapset can be taken from GISRC, if that does not exist,
> > create a new GISDBASE in the user's home, put the demolocation in it
> > and use this (I think the wingrass installer is already doing that).
> it make sense to me, I really like this idea. Martin

I am not particularly fond of this idea, I change location and mapset quite
often, so this is additional step. I agree GISDBASE and the demolocation
should be already there during the first start. Then the user can just hits
Start GRASS on the current welcome dialog and there is no need for the
minimal welcome screen. It works like this for Windows already. It creates
grassdata in My Documents if I remember correctly, I am not sure why not in

What I struggle with when explaining students how to use GRASS is not
really the welcome screen but reprojecting data. If we would find a way to
automatically reproject data during import, that would save a lot of work
and explanation and it's useful not just for beginners. This is a topic for
a different thread, how exactly it should be implemented. No matter what we
decide to do with the starting of grass, this should be implemented.
Especially when user will start with empty location, they will want to
import their data and then the reprojection is crucial. I saw a lot of
cases when they just override the projection check to overcome the error
they get and don't read.

Any opinion on what can we do for this release?


> --
> Martin Landa
> http://geo.fsv.cvut.cz/gwiki/Landa
> http://gismentors.eu/mentors/landa
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