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I am developing a whole site dedicated just to the use and adoption of GIS in the nonprofit & advocacy sectors. It's independent advice and very practical in helping you to understand what GIS is and what it can do for your organization. Also contains advice on implementation and planning, tutorials and more.
Yes, we are using ArcGIS but have used Google Maps as well. I have a question about basemap resources. I understand you can pull data from ESRI for streets, but usually it includes the whole U.S. Is there a streets basemap that is just California? Seems to me it would run faster if it didn't have to carry al the data for the rest of the U.S. I can't seem to find such a basemap. Thanks!
ibray- are you referring to the Street layer in the ESRI Resource Center online or on the DVDs or are you talking about another dataset?
The ESRI layer is US in coverage but you could manipulate your own local version of this file. Your other option is to create a local file from the Census Tiger Road layer available on the census website- this is all street centerlines and attributes- useful for geocoding and display but not a very reliable dataset. because the basemap from ESRI is coming via the web it only pulls down data for the area you are zoomed in on- so it's not affected by the overall data size. If you are pulling from your DVD locally or your network then this is more of an impact- the addvantage of online data is their servers just extract data for the area you ask it for.
Your other option is to look at purchasing a road layer from TeleAtlas or from your local county/city.
Thanks Steve, was using the Street layer in the DVD's but sounds like the online approach may work better, am usually always working at the State level. By the way, can you refresh my memory on where to find the Excel file for geocoding that was discussed? Can't seem to locate it. Thanks 2x. Ira
Search for Juice Analytics Excel Geocoder 2
here currently: http://www.juiceanalytics.com/writing/excel-geocoding-tool-v2/
I've developed an addin for Excel which does forward/reverse geocoding and GCD with GoogleMaps. Freeware: http://www.calvert.ch/geodesix/
The article is a great beginning. I hope the authors will continue to update and expand it.
It would be helpful if the article would say more about the file formats that can be read, created, and exported by programs such as GRASS and Manifold, so that laypersons or small business persons who can't afford to lay out $1200 plus can make better decisions about what affordable programs provide the most utility for time invested. A table would be useful.
I would also like to see more information about versions of GIS programs on operating systems other than Windows, especially OS X.