Digital Geography

QGIS 2.6 – Sneak Peak


The release of QGIS 2.6 is planned for October 24, but you don’t have to wait to test new functions in development. In this post I’ll look closer on two new features that in my mind will make GIS life easier, even if some improvements should be made with the first of the new features described here.

short announcement: ESRI MOOC – the outline

chalkboardAs we already informed here about the new ESRI MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) we also stated, that it is a pitty that there is no schedule available. Due to this there might be a mismatch between people’s expectations and the content of the MOOC. We also got the information that this MOOC is not for the GIS beginners.

Forest fire tracking with Landsat-8


On July 31st a forest fire broke out in the Swedish county of Västmanland. The fire was quite large by Swedish standards covering an area described as 10 x 15 kilometres. There is, to date, one confirmed death. The fire required a intensive response by the emergency services. It is located close to villages and towns and could not be allowed to spread out of control. Firefighters from the Stockholm region were deployed to assist local firefighters, the army reserve was deployed and 10 helicopters were allocated to assist fire fighting. Planes from France and Spain arrived to assist local… library

short announcement: ESRI MOOC scheduled

Esri's new announcement for the MOOCThe rumors in the geo-bloggosphere gone crazy last weeks as ESRI announced an own-hosted MOOC (Massive Open Online Course): Tweets über “ESRI Mooc” They already featured this one here at PennState University hosted at Coursera as they provided access to their ArcGIS Online plattform for all participants. Now it seems like they would like to take things seriously. Today they now announced the dates for this new MOOC. It will start on Wednesday the 3rd of September and it will last for about 6 weeks. They also created a Twitter account for this but this is more or less interesting ATM…

GIS4Geomorphology – Blog recommendation


Since I’m working mostly with GIS and Geodata for Physical Geography (Soils, Geomorphology, Climate) I came across a very precise and recommendable Blog by Skye Cooley which I would like to present in the following lines: GIS4Geomorpholgy is a blog specified on different GIS purposes of geomorphologists. The topics of the blog covers Terrain Analysis, Soil Erosion Calculations, Hydrology Modelling and a lot basic entries about the use of Geoinformationsystems.

Exploring OSM Israel/Palestine

Screenshot from 2014-07-27 10:25:23

In this post I’ll show how to explore (or data mine) Open Street Map data and use features off-line that normally can be hard to get. Many use to download zipped shapefiles to be used directly in GIS systems, but are surprised when it does not contain as much data as the same area in Open Street Map on-line. You can still use but download the *.osm.bz2 files instead. They include raw data from OSM that needs to be processed in order to be used in QGIS or other GIS applications. In QGIS there’s a tool in the…

Military Expenditure on a map

Screenshot from 2014-07-17 14:34:15

Statistical data for a geographer is fun! War is not! Regardless what you think of the military it never hurts to be informed, so… Lets play a bit with military expenditure statistics. I’m using data from SIPRI (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute), which covers military expenditure for regions and countries based on for instance GDP. The data is in Excel format (.xlsx) which is a problem for QGIS, so it has to be converted to a format that QGIS understands. First however some other issues must be addressed. In order to use the years as field names they must be…

odyssey.js: your easy story mapping engine

story map of Germany worldcup 2014Reading my tweets can be somehow interesting: It seems like ESRI invented and exclusively owns the phrase “story map”: #storymap Tweets What IS a story map? To me a story map is the same like a map: a way of information distribution. According to ESRI: “Story maps use geography as a means of organizing and presenting information. They tell the story of a place, event, issue, trend, or pattern in a geographic context. They combine interactive maps with other rich content—text, photos, video, and audio—within user experiences that are basic and intuitive” (citation). Let’s sum up the characteristics: tell  a…

Advanced access to free climate data for Germany of the Climate Data Center


Since July 1st 2014, the Deutscher Wetterdienst (DWD) eased restrictions for the usage of climate data and provides users with a big dataset of free climate data for Germany. You can obtain the data, using the FTP-Server of the Climate Data Center (CDC). The following data in the following resolutions and formats are ready to download for free: measured Paramater at the DWD-Stations for climate in hourly, daily, monthly and annual resolution and phenology in annual resolution as txt derived Paramater at the DWD-Stations for soils (pot. and actual evaporation, soil moisture, soil temperature, max. depth of frost penetration over… Newsletter!

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