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Sunday, 24 May 2015


Speaker from Responsible Gambling Foundation (Victoria) on how QGIS is applied
for assessing the proximity of pokies (gambling areas) and gamble help centres
On 14th May 2015, in the beautiful Crown Towers site, Digital Mapping Solutions (DMS) hosted a well-attended QGIS Forum. They brought city councils, companies and freelance cartographers together to listen about the progress in QGIS and its application in real scenarios. DMS is the forefront in advocating QGIS to many of its clients, active participant in QGIS development and conduct many training of QGIS. For those who don't know, QGIS (formerly Quantum GIS) is an open source GIS and increasingly adopted globally.

Despite being hosted in expensive Crown Towers (next to the Casino), DMS surprisingly hosted the morning session about QGIS with sumptuous breakfast for FREE! They are generous indeed especially the heavy breakfast! For this discussion, I will point out specific things you need to know about QGIS (which was discussed in the forum).

  1. How can I submit an issue or feature request for QGIS? Proceed to the website here
  2. How can I retain the layer file in QGIS? The .qlr file is the equivalent of ArcGIS layer file . Refer here
  3. Group layers in QGIS. Refer to this YouTube link
  4. You can import a CSV file containing a particular font setting which allows QGIS to customize the labeling based on the imported CSV.
  5. How can I produce a map where the main focus stands out as a figure? Use Mask and watch this YouTube link :                                   
  6. In the print composer, you can add the raster image as background and use blending tool to adjust the visibility strength of raster image
  7. How can I customize a legend that is only relevant to the map content? I would like to have the legend to show the layers visible on the map. Use the filter (in Legend). Refer here (Go to Legend Items)
  8. Presets can control the number of map layers viewable and it is useful for the multimap concept in print composer. Refer here
  9. QGIS is not just for desktop maps, it is also for publishing web based maps. Use qgis2leaf and read here for more details.
  10. In the forum, we have seen the demonstration of city councils of utilizing custom forms in QGIS. Refer here on how to create QGIS custom forms
From the presentations, I have noted city council organizations have been slowly dropping off the commercial GIS software in favour of QGIS. This is because the councils would like to lower the software maintenance cost and cheaper GIS distribution within the organizations, However, before embarking such transitions, each organization must undergo fundamental training in QGIS. 

I hope you find the 10 tips above allow you to explore more in depth the power of QGIS in various aspects.

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