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Product details

  • Paperback: 508 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing; 2nd Revised edition edition (24 May 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 178216152X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1782161523
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 2.9 x 23.5 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 890,702 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description

About the Author

Erik Westra

Erik Westra has been a professional software developer for over 25 years, and has worked almost exclusively in Python for the past decade. Erik's early interest in graphical user-interface design led to the development of one of the most advanced urgent courier dispatch systems used by messenger and courier companies worldwide. In recent years, Erik has been involved in the design and implementation of systems matching seekers and providers of goods and services across a range of geographical areas. This work has included the creation of real-time geocoders and map-based views of constantly changing data. Erik is based in New Zealand, and works for companies worldwide.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Very technical with a plethora of information 4 Sept. 2013
By Joel McCune - Published on
Format: Paperback
First off, I really liked this book and I found it quite interesting. Second, it is very obvious this book is written by a somebody coming from a more technical background, discovering GIS from this front. As a result, this likely is who is going to get the most from this book. As with previous reviews, yes, Packt gave me a copy to review.

If you have looked at my blog, it is obvious I tinker with Python a bit. I play with Python quite a bit in conjunction with ArcGIS and like to figure out solutions to other problems using Python as well. GIS is something I discovered through formal training in Natural Resource Management. The technical side of GIS I have learned through experience and necessity. This should frame my background coming into this book.

Digging into this book, I had to spend quite a bit of time doing side research to understand some of the code structures being used. This in no way was a bad thing. These coding methods would likely be common sense to anybody who has had formal training in development. Since I have not, I had to do my homework to understand many of the examples.

If you are approaching this text from a more development-centric perspective, there is only one chapter devoted to GIS and spatial concepts such as how projections, datums, and transformations work, different ways distance can be calculated and how distortion affects results. With my background being in GIS, all of this was a given. However, if your background in GIS is Google Maps, you may have to do some on-the-side homework to get your head wrapped around these concepts.

Given my perspective, a GIS professional, I tried to think of how this would be most useful to a GIS professional. After all, there is a massive amount of really good information here you cannot find anywhere else with such clear explanations of how to get so many technologies working together. True, there are GIS professionals out there not working in the Esri ecosystem. However, a vast majority do.

In the interest of full disclosure, yes, I do work for Esri. I work for Esri because even given the criticisms, the spatial tools Esri produces are the easiest to use and provide more power and capabilities than anything else out there. The tools discussed in this book are also very powerful and useful.

I do not view closed and open source as mutually exclusive. Rather, I try to approach them as complimentary. From this perspective, I was very interested in the discussion of SQLite with SpatiaLite and PostGIS in chapter six. ArcGIS 10.2 uses SQLite for import/export to the mobile API's and also can natively read and write data stored in Postgre SQL with the PostGIS extension. Although I have not tried it, it may be possible to store the data in one of these databases, interact with it using ArcGIS and also provide a web application developed using Django to provide a web application for interacting with the data as discussed in chapter nine.

In conclusion, I found the book hugely interesting, clearly lying out the path for combining a large number of open source technologies. Speaking from experience, this is not easy to do. This text does a decent job of lying out the path and providing line by line code examples. I was even able to follow them using a virtual machine running Ubuntu desktop, finding most of what I needed in the repositories.

My guess is most people interested in this text will find something very useful in it. If more a developer with no prior experience in GIS, you likely will eat up most of the book. If more of a GIS professional, you likely already have ArcGIS Desktop available and will likely be more interested in the later chapters discussing how to use different spatial databases and tie it in with a Django application.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Python Geospatial Development - Second Edition. 17 Aug. 2013
By Dean Howell - Published on
Format: Paperback
Python Geospatial Development - Second Edition.

The book is a comprehensive guide to all aspects of using Python in geospatial development. The book is a hands on tutorial taking you right from the libraries you and tools you will require, through every aspect of development to putting it all together in a complete mapping application.

If you are new to the geospatial industry the book even has sections on the fundamentals of coordinate systems, projections, datums and common GIS data formats.

The best part of the book, in my opinion, is all the code examples that guide you through every aspect of becoming a proficient geospatial developer. There are also many reference sites pointing you to further information about specific platforms, software packages and developer forums.

I also liked the section on data formats and where to obtain data. This can be very useful for developers starting in the industry or even those who have been in the industry for a while. Data is the key to any good geospatial system.

So if you are looking for a great resource to take your geospatial system to the next level, I highly recommend Python Geospatial Development - Second Edition.
A great book to get started on Geospatial Development 5 Jan. 2014
By sushmit sarmah - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book is an excellent starting point for anyone who wants to get started on Geospatial development. The author takes you from the very basics of geospatial development explaining all definitions that you would require to get proficient in this subject. It is then a deep dive into programming in python starting with all the different libraries that are needed and how to make use of them. Code examples are provided for each topic.

The best way to follow this book is to read and then practice the examples alongside. Very soon you would get comfortable with using the different tools available in python for geospatial development like gdal/ogr, shapely, mapnik, etc. It teaches you where to get your data, how to convert them from different formats, then customize them to your liking, store it in a database and the pros and cons of different databases and their spatial capabilities.

You learn how to create your own maps with mapnik going into great detail with all the options available in mapnik. Lastly you learn how to use all the skills learnt throughout the book to create a web application.

I would recommend this book to anyone who wishes to get started with geospatial development. All you need is some familiarity with python. It gives you a solid background and a starting point from which to learn more about the subject.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Just what I needed 16 Sept. 2013
By William V. Norflin - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book explained very clearly everything I needed to know about the "under the hood" workings of a GIS. I really like how it deals with every aspect, from the database to the graphics and everything in between. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants a better understanding of how each component of a GIS function and work together to display an intelligent map.
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