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Thread: Natural Earth Data: Free Vector or Raster Map Data

  1. #11
      Redrobes is offline
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    Hah LOL, I wouldn't hold your breath ! Monks and I work on the Me-Dem project and all of those tools like GeoTerSys are command line based and hung together with ImageMaghick, Perl and GnuMake. Its a brilliant system, rock solid with total control - but I am forever being told that I need to do a GUI... I was really pleased when I saw it was command line

    At mo I am writing a program for a customer and I am using the navteq GIS data. They have Paris and Chicago as their two demo bits of the world which is free to download except you have to agree on a click through not to use it for anything but testing. So with this data set thats really cool to use as back drops for the map visualization as I have been using google to keep checking the data. The problem with google is that tho they have the lat long in the link which you can get at its still a bit approximate. This might be able to give a set lat long box of image which is properly aligned without fussing with the links and guessing the corners.

  2. #12
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    After being sent to the site by a member, I spent the next half hour downloading ever single thing that could be of use to me. However I just discovered that all the files can't be read by any of the Adobe programs that I have. Are there any Mac programs available to open these files?

  3. #13
    Publisher Gamerprinter's Avatar
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    Mac won't do it, you need a GIS program to export this out, read the first page of this thread, there are links to several free GIS apps here to turn their data into PDFs which you can extract the layers as TIF, JPG, whatever.

    GP
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      drjill is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Black Barook! View Post
    After being sent to the site by a member, I spent the next half hour downloading ever single thing that could be of use to me. However I just discovered that all the files can't be read by any of the Adobe programs that I have. Are there any Mac programs available to open these files?
    There are a few quite good Mac GIS programs that work natively with shapefiles. You should become familiar with the basics of GIS to take advantage of any of them. qGIS is a great open source app - I use it regularly (made for Windows, Mac OS, and Linux). Cartographica is a new commercial Mac OS GIS app that looks promising (though I have no personal experience with it). MyWorldGIS is a nice application developed primarily for education - it has some surprisingly powerful analysis features (my review) for an edu app and is relatively easy to use. GIS programs can have relatively weak cartography rendering but would be capable of manipulating (for example, clipping out areas of data) and exporting for further use. Ortelius (disclaimer of relationship here) is a map illustration app native to Mac with great cartographic rendering and imports shapefiles, though the current Standard Edition does not geo-register layers (this means you cannot import several layers and have them automatically align or change the projection - you can manually align layers). We are developing a Pro Ed that will have this functionality.

    I also help with editing the NEV administrative boundaries. It is indeed a great data set made specifically for cartography. The different scale data are simplified accordingly and all layers at each scale "fit together" nicely. The shapefiles compliment (and inpired by) the great raster datasets of Tom Patterson's Natural Earth. If you search through shadedrelief.com you'll find a number of CS3 format files for download. Definite kudos to the visionaries to create it and make it public domain, and the volunteers and NACIS to build and support it.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by drjill; 08-16-2010 at 12:53 PM.

    Jill Saligoe-Simmel

    Ortelius™ – Map Illustration Software

  6. #16
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    Thanks Gamerprinter, Drjill. I decided to use qGIS for the mac and it seems to crash. I assumed it was because I didn't download the frameworks and such, so I did. While trying to install those, one of them won't install due to a lack of GDAL. So I Googled it, got it and I don't know how to install it since there isn't a DMG file anywhere...

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      drjill is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Black Barook! View Post
    Thanks Gamerprinter, Drjill. I decided to use qGIS for the mac and it seems to crash. I assumed it was because I didn't download the frameworks and such, so I did. While trying to install those, one of them won't install due to a lack of GDAL. So I Googled it, got it and I don't know how to install it since there isn't a DMG file anywhere...
    I've had good luck with the stand-alone installation 'all in one' bundle for Mac OS X is provided for "new users." In fact, I highly recommend it for all but very technically-minded and advanced users.

    Jill Saligoe-Simmel

    Ortelius™ – Map Illustration Software

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