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Tag "data handling"

CASA has recently been awarded “Centre of Excellence“ by Autodesk, and they provide their software packages. The software no is available in CASA and a few projects are taking shape on them. See a recent post by digitalUrban on the latest project using LandXplorer to map aerial images onto a 3d Lidar London model.
An other software of the Autodesk package is the Map 3D, a sort of AutoCAD GIS. On their website it is described as ”AutoCAD® Map 3D software enables engineers, planners, mapping technicians, surveyors, and GIS professionals to directly access, edit, visualize, and analyze a broad variety of CAD and spatial data in a familiar AutoCAD® software environment.“
With the experience from the previous mapping of the UrbanDiary data, this product looked as if it would be worth having a look at. The initial came from a link I came a cross on the web while searching for something related to a csv file. On map3d.wordpress.com I cam ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ a blog post on how to import a csv file into Map 3D and as the UrbanDiary data was available in csv I thought I just give it a go.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

map3D_01.14mW0E6WMcAR.jpgmap3D_02.XHiM0El985JJ.jpg
Image by UrbanTick – Screenshots from Map 3D

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Image by UrbanTick – Screenshots from Map 3D – attribute box

It is actually straightforward once I figured out that the data formats in the csv file have to be set to number rather than text. Anyway, the data can be linked in via the OCDB data base link. This will include all the attributes from the csv table.
So far so good the data is there and can be used. With the help of the attribute table, changes in the visualization are simple. The rule builder is easy to use and produces good results, including an automatically generated key

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Image by UrbanTick – Screenshots from Map 3D – generated key

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Image by UrbanTick – Screenshots from Map 3D – data displayed per week day including a label

So for not having used the software before I am quite satisfied with the result. Importing the data, sorting it according to the attribute table and apply visualization characteristics depending on features, not bad.
It appears that the program slows down quite quickly. The first run was with a subset o the UrbanDiary data, some 10’000 points and this was fine. Going up to 45’000 points used quite a lot of power and slowed down the machine drastically. Switching from 2D mode into 3D did not really work and it was a struggle to get back without quitting the program.
The next thing was the analyzing functions. Using the buffer worked ok, again on a subset of points, but the machine got slower again. Meaning it was not responding at times and I would get the funny message by Vista ”The program is currently not responding would you like to quit or wait for the program?“ Of course I want to wait for the program and eventually it would come back. The first crash was not far and after the importing some aerial imagery of London to give the points some context I gave up. But only for today, because I was impressed by the program’s user-friendly approach. Compared to other GIS that are very technical, Map 3D was a little bit intuitive to me. I am now telling myself that the performance problems are all down to me not being experienced enough and it will be all better next time.
The next thing to try is eventually to get the GPS data from Map 3D into Autodesk 3D Studio Max for visualization purposes. This would be the software way, people here in CASA are currently working on a programming solution for this.

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The open source online street atlas Open Street Map is produced by volunteers uploading GPS tracks and adding names and features. To get specific areas mapped, mapping parties are organized. A number of interested people meet up to map the area. It’s a lot of fun and provides a social aspect to the all so lonely occupation of the maper.
The latest mapping party took place in Milton Keynes in the UK and is very well documented on the web. A number of people have participated and they covered quite a lot in a previously for Open Street Map (OSM) unmapped area. In the image below each participant is assigned an individual colour. This trace shows what she/he has been mapping.

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Image from wiki.openstreetmap.org

The very nice example also comes as an animation. A Python script makes this possible. Instructions to do so can be found here.
Thanks for the link go to Andrew Crooks from GISagent.

Open street map has provided us with nice animations o their GPS traces before. There was the breath taking clip about OSM world wide earlier this year. A version on vimeo:
OSM 2008: A Year of Edits from ItoWorld on Vimeo.

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After a lot of complicated file manipulations, the data is in a format or better in a location or just is set up to be usable. Well, it is not exactly complicated to handle the data, I was just not quite sure how best to store it. The main problem is the date format, a misinterpretation seems to happen during one of the steps, still have to figure out where exactly.
So it took a few trial and error investigations to figure out what might be usable. The solution for the moment is gpx to csv to database and then to put into Google Earth or GeoTime it has to go back into a csv to Excel.
So from Excel it can simply be linked to GeoTime. While installing GeoTime it will automatically install the GeoTime Excel Plug-In that can then be use to link the open spreadsheet to GeoTime. There is a setup to be made but this is rather straightforward, basically telling GeoTime which column of the spreadsheet contains what kind of information. Several different settings can be saved for later use, which is great, as it is likely that the same source will be used a number of times. Then the data is in GeoTime after some processing. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

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Image by urbanTick – Screen shot from GeoTime

Funny enough, this time the meeting query tool works. After failing to use it in my first go with the Plymouth365 data, I was tempted to get this to work with the new UD data set. And there you go it worked right away. I guess I was just not patient enough with the larger PLY365 set, it probably just takes long, longer than I was willing to wait….
Anyway, interesting who has meet during this first week of data collection. Surprisingly, some people who do not know one another have actually met within a few minutes time difference in the same location. According to the data they just crossed path briefly, but still.

UDp_090212_meeting01.bsATtsL5R6K5.jpgUDp_090212_meeting02.QDDDZ1Yi7rtm.jpgUDp_090212_meeting03.rGMqm6vbHV6x.jpgUDp_090212_meeting04.JKOSbKtgwtnX.jpg
Screen shots from GeoTime, showing meetings in space and time – by urbanTick

Telling from those screen shots, GeoTime’s ability to output information apart from the screen is pretty bad. As a designer and visual person I want much more control over this than this program offers. It is essentially a screen shot in png format. It should at least offer an option to output some vector format to allow further use and especially endless sizing options.

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