Digital Geography

ArcGIS Open Data

Pie chart with highlightningFor a year, ESRI’s open data initiative is online. As I’ve heard about it for the first time I was just thinking: nice move to get people into their ArcGIS online environment. But I have to admit: I was not looking and exploring their platform. Now I stumbled upon a recent post on reddit and there it was again: has 25,000+ open datasets all accessible by a common API. Full disclosure: I work on the team that builds the product. So let’s have a look at it…

Short Announcement: QGIS 2.8 Wien released

2015-02-22 19_08_16-Program ManagerQGIS 2.8 (the new “Long Term Release”) was released a few days ago. It is a minor release according to the changelog but it will be supported in this setup at least for the next year: Some good news for all those working in a bigger, administrated environment as it is always a problem to update software in these bigger infrastructures. New features: >1000 issues flagged by static analysis tools fixed new code commits and pull requests are now automatically tests against our testing framework. more responsive browser support for contextual WMS legend graphics custom prefixes for joins creation of…

GISconnector for Excel


GISconnector for Excel – the beginning of a beautiful friendship between ArcGIS and Excel The GISconnector transforms ArcGIS and Excel into an ingenious overall system: The power of Excel is available in ArcGIS and vice versa – ArcGIS and Excel turn into an integrated working environment. This unique combination enables a smooth transfer of data and functions between the two programs – this works without an editing session. The GISconnector for Excel software completely revolutionizes the way you work with ArcGIS – a giant step towards time saving and error minimization. 2 Add-ins communicate with each other: Use the shortest…

Creating ARCs in QGIS: The Python Way

curves in QGISSo I came across this nice little project which focussed on trip planning and route over large distances… And there was this nice little post from Nathan Yau at where he describes the making of great circles from one point to different other points in R and the other example from Anita Graser where she shows how to deal with an Arc in QGIS but using postgis functionality. So what about QGIS itself and a programmatic way? See yourself…

No tags

Maps of “Out of Eden Walk” by Paul Salopek (National Geographic)

Out of eden walk

Today I had the chance to attend a lecture by Paul Salopek in Tbilisi, Georgia. This lecture took me to the idea to write a short review about Paul Salopek and his project here on Digital-Geography because he mentioned several times that mapping his journey is one of his main goals. Some would wonder now: Which journey? – I’ll tell you what’s about: Paul Salopek is a journalist of National Geographic who is doing an amazing project at the moment. He is walking from the birthplace of humanity in Ethiopia at the pathways of human spreading around our globe for more…

Create A Raster Layer Index With QGIS And GDAL


When working with raster datasets, it is hard to keep an overview of the raster files in use and their coverage. Most raster data providers may keep metadata in the filename itself, like path, row and a timestamp. But for more convenience, it is possible to create an index of your raster maps. This article will show you, how to accomplish this in QGIS or with the Terminal.

GeoTiff compression comparison


In remote sensing you often have to deal with large datsets because their spatial or temporal resolution is high. A typical Landsat 8 scene clocks in at 0.7 – 1 GB and if you are trying to process satellite images for a continent or even the globe you’re easily looking at multiple terrabytes of input data. I am currently working with MODIS time series data, which will use about 4 TB of space even before any processing is done. Therefore I started looking into compression methods. One of the easiest ways to save space is by employing the compression methods some file…

Google Earth Pro is now for free!

GE Pro example

Google recently made an announcement that left me very happy: Google Earth Pro, the enhanced version of the world’s most popular digital globe, is now available for free. The software comes with some additional features compared to classical GoogleEarth and used to be $400 per year – actually many users paid because the benefit was huge. Now all you have to do is to register, get a free key, and download the software. If registration doesn’t work for you, don’t worry and don’t give up. It didn’t work for me when I tried first, the next day I tried again…

SMAP – “Soil Moisture Active Passive” generates high resolution soil data


Since we are still in the International of Year of Soils , another Digital Soil Science post is ready. Some of you might already know that I’m addicted to soil. As a guy who works in the field of soil erosion modelling, any kind of soil data is interesting for me and some are quite relevant. Especially soil texture and soil moisture are very crucial values about predicting soil stabilization. I showed a global soil database in a previous post, which contains many high resolution soil data. But guess what: Some more soil data is coming. This time the datasource is…

Attribute Updating using ArcPy


After my first attempt in Python scripting using opensource Geospatial Data Abstraction Library (GDAL), I wanted to use ArcPy  in my second trial. The following code is so simple. You can use it to update the attribute table of a shapefile based on another shapefile/table. Let me break it down using this pseudo-code: Choose the first shapefile (the source). Identify the unique ID field in that shapefile. Write down all the values from the desired field (to replace the old values). Choose the second shapefile (the destination). Search for the unique ID records which meet that unique ID field in (step 2). Update…

Macro-Based SE-GPS


When you’re in the field you want to collect as much data as possible using all the expensive and heavy equipment you brought with. For instance, geophysical profiling (e.g. ERT, electrical resistivity tomography; GPR, ground-penetrating radar) provides high-resolution images of the shallow subsurface. Often conspicuous geometries are evidences for changes in the subsurface.