Quantum GIS 0.8 “Titan” Released

Gary Sherman announces on the QGIS developer blog that the open source desktop GIS QGIS 0.8 has been released. The average QGIS user will have to wait a couple days though:

At present this is primarily a source release for those that want to build QGIS. Packages for most Linux distributions, Windows, and Mac OS X are being assembled and should be available in the next few days.

Keep an eye out on the QGIS 0.8 download page for the package releases (Windows, OS X, etc).

For those who have forgotten why QGIS 0.8 is an important milestone, here are a few of the new features:

  • WMS support
  • Improved vector and attribute editing
  • Improved measure tools with area measuring
  • Attribute searching
  • New legend structure
  • Refactoring of API to allow the use of QGIS libraries in mapping applications
  • Improved MapServer export tool
  • Vector layer transparency and antialiasing
  • GRASS support in all platforms
  • Enhanced GRASS support and toolbox commands
  • Enhanced vector editing, including copy, cut, paste, snapping and vertex editing
  • Shapefile/OGR layer editing

Some screen shots of the windows version:





Sean updates PlanetGS Scrubber Greasemonkey Script

I see Sean updated his Planet Geospatial Scrubber Greasemonkey script. This is a great resource for those who don’t like some feeds showing up in Planet Geospatial You might not be interested in Google Earth, so you could block all Ogle Earth and Google Earth Blog posts from showing up. Just download Greasemonkey and then edit the PlanetGS Scrubber to include these URLs. Then they will never bother you again. Sean has excellent instructions inside the script (right click and download the script to your computer, then edit it in your favorite text editor).

NASA Worldwind 1.4RC is out

I never got to post it, but NASA Worldwind 1.4RC was released on December 23rd. I think Chad has been bugging me to post about it for a couple of days, but I’ve been kind of oblivious to his proding. 😉

Since we all love to know what is new, here is the “What’s New” list:

  • Plugin: Movie Recorder (added avi xport)
  • Plugin: Place Finder Loader (Supports more geocoders)
  • Plugin: Satellite Tracker
  • Plugin: Virtal Earth, downloads Microsoft local live data (must be loaded from the plugins menu, then activated by clicking the toolbar icon)
  • Plugin: Improved WMS browser with GetCapabilities support
  • Data: New NRL data
  • Data: WFS placenames and boundaries
  • Core: New accurate sunshading
  • Core: Support for 3D models
  • Core: Atmosphere (Improved with atmospheric scattering)
  • Core: Added widget support
  • Widget: New scalebar
  • Widget: Time controller
  • Widget: 3D compass widget
  • Installer: Removed background
  • Installer: Mars, Moon, SDSS icons removed
  • Installer: .Net 2.0 check
  • Installer: Added command line tags NODOTNET, /NODX, /NOMDX) to skip detection of .NET, DirectX 9.0c, and Managed DirectX, to skip checks respectively.

The bug list for RC2 is here.


Scripting in GIS

Python IconThere has been a ton of discussion about scripting in GIS in this thread. No matter what GIS platform you use, at some point you are writing a script to accomplish some sort of geoprocessing task. For me it was all AML until Python showed up. I never got into the VBScript/JScript stuff as AML did all I needed. For some though it isn’t just the ability to script in their favorite language, but what kind of scripting help the application has. IntelliSense, integrated debugging, syntax highlighting are all big ones in almost everyones book, but does having them integrated into your desktop GIS matter at all?

Santa and the North Pole

Santa Google Earth

My son is very excited and can’t wait. We’ve been tracking Santa all morning. One of my young nephews asked why Santa’s workshop isn’t at the North Pole. I was surprised by the question and asked how he knew that. He said his Dad had been showing him the GE Santa KML stuff and Santa’s workshop is in Canada. I was thinking about explaining that users have great difficulty navigating at the poles and that Google had to move it so that people could see it. That seemed a little too much for him so I fell back on there are no islands at the north pole. Unlike the South Pole, the North Pole is just water. So Santa lives on an island as close to the North Pole as possible. He seemed to buy that….

Connor and I are tracking Santa on the internet and all I had growing up was visits to Santa’s Village. Oh well, Merry Christmas!