Quantum GIS

Quantum GIS (QGIS) is a user friendly Open Source Geographic Information System (GIS) licensed under the GNU General Public License. QGIS is an official project of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo). It runs on Linux, Unix, Mac OS X, and Windows and supports numerous vector, raster, and database formats and functionalities.

The QGIS project offers different applications for different use cases:

  • QGIS Desktop - The classic QGIS desktop application offers many GIS functions for data viewing, editing, and analysis.
  • QGIS Browser - A fast and easy data viewer for local, network and online (WMS) data.
  • QGIS Server - A standard-compliant WMS 1.3 server that can be easily configured using QGIS Desktop project files.
  • QGIS Web Client - A web front-end for web mapping needs based on OpenLayers and GeoExt.

QGIS Desktop

The major features include:

  • Direct viewing of vector and raster data in different formats and projections. Supported formats include:
    • PostGIS and SpatiaLite;
    • most vector formats supported by the OGR library, including ESRI shapefiles, MapInfo, SDTS and GML;
    • raster formats supported by the GDAL library*, such as digital elevation models, aerial photography or landsat imagery;
    • GRASS locations and mapsets;
    • online spatial data served as OGC-compliant WMS , WMS-C (Tile cache), WFS and WFS-T.
  • Mapping and interactive exploration of spatial data. Tools include:
    • on-the-fly reprojection;
    • print composer;
    • overview panel;
    • spatial bookmarks;
    • identify/select features;
    • edit/view/search attributes;
    • feature labeling;
    • vector diagram overlay;
    • advanced vector and raster symbology;
    • graticule layer;
    • map decorations like north arrow, scale bar and copyright label.
  • Create, edit and export spatial data using:
    • digitizing tools for vector features;
    • field and raster calculator;
    • the georeferencer plugin;
    • GPS tools to import and export GPX format, convert other GPS formats to GPX, or down/upload directly to a GPS unit.
  • Perform spatial analysis, including:
    • map algebra;
    • terrain analysis;
    • hydrologic modeling;
    • network analysis;
    • Publish your map on the internet using QGIS Server or the "Export to Mapfile" capability (requires UMN MapServer);
    • Adapt QGIS to your needs through the extensible plugin architecture.

QGIS Browser

QGIS Browser is a simple and fast data viewer. It enables the user to browse through all spatial data files on the system as well as all WMS configured in QGIS. Both files and WMS layers are listed in a tree widget on the left side while metadata, attributes and a preview can be seen on the right.

QGIS Server

QGIS Server currently offers WMS 1.3.0 and 1.1.1 implementation. Features include:

  • Enhanced WMS (Web Map Service) via HTTP GET. Supports GetCapabilities, GetMap, GetStyle, GetFeatureInfo and custom styling with Styled Layer Descriptor (Supported standards: WMS 1.3.0, WMS 1.1.1, and SLD 1.0.0).
  • SOAP via HTTP POST. Compatible with the ORCHESTRA and SANY Service Oriented Architecture.
  • Native configuration with SLD. User friendly map symbolisation using QGIS Desktop.
  • Cartographic extensions to SLD (diagrams, patterns and custom symbols with Scalable Vector Graphics). Exchange of cartographic rules with the GetStyle operation.

The QGIS mapserver is a FastCGI/CGI application written in C++. It works together with a webserver (Apache in most cases) invoking the FastCGI application. It uses QGIS as backend for the GIS logic and for map rendering.

Supported plattforms include Linux, Windows XP (only CGI at the moment) and MacOSX. Other Unixes possible, but not tested.

QGIS mapserver is an open source program released under the GPL license.

QGIS Web Client

A WMS based webgis client that makes use of QGIS specific WMS extensions (e.g. highlighting, printing, metadata, etc.). QGIS Web Client reads the configuration from the WMS GetCapabilities command and builds the layer tree accordingly. Supports legend graphic, feature info requests and printing.

The client builds on existing Web-GIS libraries OpenLayers and GeoExt, as well as ExtJS 3 for the GUI widgets.

All major browsers should be supported.

More about Quantum GIS project:

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