Talking about free technology, open data, networks and geography on the web is my profession. I wasn’t born with a tablet in hand, but I was prepared when the Geospatial Revolution started. Do you know QGis? Let’s find it out together!
A City Planner Who Likes QGis?
The free and complete access to the Internet and a pocket computing capacity which exceeds the most basic requirements has changed our experience of cities. But there’s more: collecting data, archiving, analyzing, managing and sharing information has been every urban planner’s dream for at least a century. In 1989, the IT specialist and game designer Will Wright introduced the first PC game: SimCity. This game was hardly mentioned during my studies, but the practice training of every workshop I attended suggested that SimCity offered the key method to manage an area. The teaching method of the series Geospatial Revolution provides concrete examples of the application of GIS (Geography Information System) in every field: spatial planning, geology, architecture, agriculture, forestry, military action, archaeology and humanitarian organizations.
And what about Citymapper?
If you look around, anywhere, and you try to evaluate qualitatively and quantitatively what you see, maybe you’re starting to realize that every place can be “designed” in a multi-dimensional way. The list of information attributable to a simple park bench can be very long, including physical characteristics, the view it offers, the possibility of having services in the nearby, spatial diffusion of the object, etc.
Everyone can “become a sensor” and collect data while moving around thanks to smartphones, these awesome objects that we can carry in our pockets and whose use is not only that of checking Facebook. When we take a picture with Instagram, we often get geographical coordinates without noticing. This data collection is an emerging subject in metropolitan areas. There are Apps which can be used professionally if taken in the right way, although they are not meant for a professional purpose: