Installing QuantumGIS in Ubuntu

One can install QGIS  either directly through Ubuntu Software Center or through terminal.

I did it through terminal. One just need to give four commands to install it.

gurpinder@gurpinder:~$ sudo apt-get install python-software-properties

gurpinder@gurpinder:~$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntugis/ubuntugis-unstable

gurpinder@gurpinder:~$ sudo apt-get update

gurpinder@gurpinder:~$ sudo apt-get install qgis

Screenshot from 2013-07-01 01:20:04


Introduction to GIS

GIS is wonderful technology with great tools that help to grasp our data in better way.

GIS or Geographical Information System is a collection of software that allows you to create, visualize, query and analyze geospatial data.

You can say it is a computer-based tool for mapping and analyzing geographic phenomenon that exist, and events that occur, on Earth. Geospatial data refers to information about the geographic location of an entity. This often involves the use of a geographic coordinate, like a latitude or longitude value. One can perform variety of functions using geospatial data like computing distances between two points, or calculating particular area.

GIS has four main functional subsystems:

1. Data Input:  allows to capture, collect, and transform spatial and thematic data into digital form

2.Data Storage and Retrieval:  organizes the data in form which helps user to retrieve data easily

3.Data Manipulation and Analysis :  allows  to define and execute spatial procedures to generate derived information

4. Data Output : allows the user to generate graphic displays, normally maps, and tabular reports

Geospatial data is of two types: Raster data and Vector Data.

We can say that raster data is usually a digital satellite imagery or air photos. Raster data make use of grid-cell data structure where the geographic area is divided into cells identified by row and column.

Vector data is has some qualities which we studied in our trigonometry and coordinate geometry classes. Vector storage implies the use of vectors (directional lines) to represent a geographic feature. Vector data is characterized by the use of sequential points or vertices to define a linear segment. Each vertex consists of an X coordinate and a Y coordinate.

The range of GIS application is very large. You can use it for anything.

Take Crime Mapping. Mapping crime, using GIS, you can identify the crime hot spots. There are many similar examples where you can use GIS.

GIS is even useful to businessmen. One in Real Estate can make strong use of GIS.

Now,I must end with saying “GIS is just AWESOME “.

Every time something wrong has to go with me. Yesterday I worked whole day to change my fonts. As usual, I tried by making different changes in different files. I know this time also,the task is very simple and the thing is I’m just not getting the point.

I got error which clearly says that I have a problem in my osm.xml. Before making any change, I always take backup of my files.So I moved my original osm.xml into file system (thought this would solve my problem). And got the same error. So I thought I would have mistakenly  made change in my osm.xml before taking backup.

So parbhdeep sent me her osm.xml and I moved it in my file system (hoping it would solve problem) and I got almost  same error.

Now I’m 99% sure that there’s no problem with my osm.xml. Today I did nothing useful 😦


My thoughts on OpenStreetMap


OpenStreetMap is the project that creates and distributes free geographic data for the world.

OSM is a collaborative project to create a free editable map of the world.

OpenStreetMap is the Wikipedia of maps. Everyday thousands of people edit map.

Here I must say – “everyday thousands of people improve map, fix mistakes and are adding new data”.


Now, a question comes in mind, What makes OpenStreetMap great ?

There may be different views from different people.


There is less chance of mistake or wrong mapping in OpenStreetMap. For the first time, anybody viewing the map can suggest correction. If by mistake one person marked some location wrong, then there would be ten more to pick it.


OpenStreetMap project has amazing amount of geodata made available to the world for free. OSM data is even used by many known names on web like Foursquare, Craigslist, Wikipedia, Mapquest, and Apple’s iOS Maps app. It is used in humanitarian operations also, as now many contributers are working together to mark the havoc caused by rain in Kedarnath, India.


You can add notes on OSM by just clicking ‘Add a note’ in the bottom right corner.

OpenStreetMap is a map for the people, by the people, and made with personal local knowledge.

Personally, OpenStreetMap is very special to me. Working in OSM project made me feel for the first time that I can love Computer Science as much as I love Civil Engineering. Thank You Rai Sir for you gave me such a awesome project to work.


“He that can have patience can have what he will.” ― Benjamin Franklin

Though this post has nothing to do with my training, but still I learned a big lesson from my experience.On Tuesday, while coming back from Kamal’s home, wasp (or some poisonous insect)  stung me on eye. It hurts so bad you want to cry but instead I went to doctor , got a treatment in about one minute.

My eye, however, swelled shut and the whole side of my face swelled to the size of an watermelon.
Even my other eye got swelled too. I was unable to see anything from my one eye and it was irritating too.

I again went to doctor again and asked him to do something for my swelling.But he replied calmly that we don’t have a medicine for swelling (that was really more irritating) but has a weapon to fight with it, that’s the patience.He further said that you can thank GOD  for you are not born like this.Be patient and enjoy every moment of your life.

Though this wasn’t a good experience but from I learned a big lesson from it.

Today me and Parbhdeep went to Kamal‘s home. We together  did our work. We made changes in our osm.xml,,rendred.conf. Then we deleted our cache.

Then we did rendering and got changes in fonts colors and background. Today we got little success and we are going to complete our work soon.


Today, day started with new hope,though we were bit worried for our work.

Kamal has some problem with her tiles. So we stared reading bash scripts of my packages.

While reading scripts,we found some files are missing in her file system. In /usr/share/munin/plugins/mod_tile*, Kamal don’t have mod_tile_fresh,mod_tile_zoom,mod_tile_response.

We found that tile server set up with packages and manually have entirely different paths for their files.

Then we all five  sat in circle and discussed about various things like mapnik,rendering processes,apache etc.It was a kind of hot debate.

In evening, we had two presentations. From them, I got to know about many new things