Digital Geography

ILWIS GIS – Tutorial I [Introduction]

Today I’ll start with a new series of tutorials for an open Source GIS called “ILWIS GIS“. ILWIS is the short term for “Integrated Land and Water Information System” developed at the ITC Enschede and distributed under the GNU General public license as open Source GIS since 2007. It’s purposes is designed for geoecological questions. It can handle both, vector- and rasterdata.     If you’re interessted in ILWIS you can download the newest version here: http://52north.org/communities/ilwis/ilwis-open/download. The software package is available for the following operation systems: Windows and with the use of additional software on Linux and Mac OS X. The language…

uMap – easy open source webmap creation based on OSM, Leaflet and Django

Creating maps is the most appropriate way to present spatial data. In the last years several methods appeared to generate such webmaps. Based on a tile-layer, wich contains all basic map informations such cities, motorways, natural elements etc, even inexperienced computer users can drop their informations with ease. Nevertheless there are some methods and services, wich are easier than others, even if they have less options in map configuration. uMap can be classified as such a smart and easy way to get your spatial informations on a reasonable webmap, which can easily embeded to your personal homepage and so on.…

Analog Geography – German soil of the year 2014 is the vineyard soil

Sometimes you need to replace bits and bytes with dirt and soils, and today’s news are really pushing me to leave the desk and to go for a walk. Every year, the Deutsche Bodenkundliche Gesellschaft (German Pedological Society) announces the Soil of the Year. Next year’s soil is the Vineyard Soil! It’s not only one, but a whole group of soils known for their high fertility and their anthropogenic, mineral rich R-horizons. In Germany, those R-horizons formed as early as in Roman times in some regions, since the Romans brought the civilization wine to Germany. Currently, I am feeling a…

How to find geospatial data for Spain

In some countries, such as the USA and Spain, there is a very nice law that makes life easy for geoscientists. This law guarantees free access to a broad range of geospatial data like DEMs, satellite imagery, aerial photographs, ground use data, hydrological information and so on. In most cases, these data are made public via web-based GIS applications. These are generally rather slow, but allow to display a lot of different datasets. I did both my diploma thesis and my PhD in Spain and I really needed to find out about all the data available. I knew that they…

Free Sources of Geospatial Raster Data

I’m always looking for good sources of free data, so I thought I would post a few here in case they were useful to others. The sources listed below tend to be larger providers of regional to global level data, however, please post suggestions in the comments if there are other sources you like and think should be added. I had initially planned to include vector data here, but I think that will be another post as this one got quite long. SAR Data Free Synthetic Aperture Radar data can be some of the hardest to find, but it is…

Map Projections, spatialreference.org and gdalwarp

Map Projections The question of map projections and how to reproject data is one that comes up often in discussions with both experienced colleagues and those new to the geospatial profession. I’m not going to go through a complete discussion of map projections here, as there are many resources available on the Internet that can help you. I’m going to focus more on how to move data between projections. At its most simple a map projection is simply a mathematical description of how to take data on the surface of a sphere, that are inherently 3-dimensional, and transform them to…

QGIS Plugins — OpenLayers

Click for previous article in this series about RasterCalc How often have you been working on a project in QGIS and wanted some nice background imagery, perhaps for a quick and dirty evaluation of your own data? I find I need this with growing frequency and a great way to do it is through the OpenLayers plugin for QGIS. Of course, if you know of a good WMS for your area of interest you can always go that route, but the OpenLayers plugin is a great addition to your QGIS toolbox. The OpenLayers plugin is available through the official QGIS…

Favorite QGIS Plugins – RasterCalc

RasterCalc QGIS Plug-in QGIS is an open-source geographic information system that is familiar to many geospatial professionals. I find more and more that I’m able to use QGIS for most of my GIS needs and this is in large part due to the great plug-ins that are available. In this post I want to give an overview of one of my favorite plug-ins, RasterCalc. If you have QGIS installed on your system, you can download RasterCalc from the official plug-in repository, here. After downloading, you can install it in the appropriate location for your system. In my case that is:…