Resources that may be useful for GIS users

The end of My Tracks


The end of My Tracks….in April 2016.

I have always been a skeptic of updates, so before updating My Tracks with the January 21 release, I scrolled over to the comments.  Comments are always useful,  they often save you from moving to the point of no return on an app.  So I started reading these comments and people had very colourful comments like Derek Cho saying “Please don’t kill My Tracks!”  So the curious me obviously Googled and I found Heena’s blog expressing the sad news.

So, as much as I would like to generate more vids on My Tracks, its a dead end (totally sucks,My Tracks and I were going to jog in the spring when igloo living subsided to bring warm weather….because you know Canada weather — there’s a half joke there…sorry).

So before this app goes extinct,I would recommend giving it a try…just like how you gave Neopets, a vitual pet a try. 😉  In the mean time, I’ll post my one and only other video on My Tracks soon enough,  while I poke through the *kmz output.

It’s not all sad, don’t forget, you can use other apps to do the same functionality.   Read my post describing this, Click Here.  Yohann posts on his blog (I’ve taken the liberty to paraphrase en anglais, Click here for his full post en francais):

Google has also proposed a list of other applications (including compatible third-party applications) that you can try, such as Google Fit, Strava, Endomondo, Map My Run, Map My Hike, GPS Logger for Android, GPX Viewer.

Going back to the topic on Comments, I’d like to thank all YouTube viewers for your brave comments and questions on my video…its scary to ask for help, but your comments also help other Viewers who embark on similar challenges.   As always, we try to attend to your Comments as humanly as we can and we try to give meaningful advice with what information you do share.   Feel free to share your My Tracks experiences with video or screenshots,  we’d love to hear your experiences.

Click Here for a link to our My Tracks Tutorial

We’ll catch you in the next video!


#2015 #GIS #Nerd #Wishlist

If you’re pondering what to get a #GIS #nerd for #Christmas, hopefully this might give you some ideas.

I was pondering this morning on some great Christmas gift, given that it’s Christmas Eve.  Though if you’re planning to get it under the Christmas Tree, it might be tough, unless you’re in North America where there are actually some premium services that almost guarantee it’ll be on time for Christmas Day.  At the bottom of this post, I have one FREE gift suggestion (I promise is GIS-related).

For the friend that constantly ask GIS questions, help them turn into an expert.

  1. GIS For Dummies (also check on the internet there may be a free excerpt floating around)
  2. Getting to Know ArcGIS
  3. GIS Tutorial 1: Basic Workbook
  4. GIS Tutorial 2: Spatial Analysis Workbook
  5. GIS Tutorial 3: Advanced Workbook

All of the books I’ve personally read, and the tutorial is great.  The books also come with a trial version of the software (if I recall correctly) so you can follow along (don’t quote me on this…..).

For the GIS expert, looking to learn programming, there are a number of free tutorials you can access on YouTube (as you can see we supply GIS themed tutorials on YouTube for free). So I would reckon their next step is programming.  The following book is something I was recommended to try (though, I haven’t had the time to read it).  It was recommended just because it didn’t cost like $100, its like less than $20.  So affordable.

Learning Geospatial Analysis with Python

Lastly, if you’re like me and you like the cheap & FREE gifts, link them to a good YouTube find or the TeachuGIS Channel.  Using the built in Search Function, you can search for any video that we have uploaded.  Just a tip, if there is something we can make a video on, post it in Discussion (often folks post it in the Comments of Video, but, its really hard to follow because we get SO MANY COMMENTS!).  Since we have started the YouTube Channel, we have received close to 500 comments (and I would say a majority has been answered by our Team).

Let your friend know this is one channel that definitely interacts with viewers.  And if you Subscribe, you get the latest notification on new video tutorials!  Also, don’t forget to Thumbs Up a video if you found it useful, it helps other YouTuber gauge what they might be watching.


Starting 2016, we are working to expand our videos on Google Maps.  To cater to the growing tablet, device and phone users, we are releasing a set of videos that you might find #fun and #free to do on your device!  As always, we enjoy sharing tutorial videos using #opensource #freely available data so you can download the data and follow along.  We are making an effort to use free software so you can follow along and try it yourself!

As always, Happy GIS-ing and we’ll catch you in the next video!  Cheers! Widgets

Need file extension, there’s a 30-second solution

Just want to do a plug for a YouTuber DoItIn30Seconds.  This channel shares video solutions in 30 seconds.  No audio just quick solutions.  It’s actually great if you’re working and you just need a quick computer troubleshoot, but you don’t want anyone to catch you.

Here’s the playlist for Windows 7 (click to access)

Here’s the playlist for Windows 8 (click to access)

Here’s the playlist for Microsoft Word (click to access)

Hopefully more videos will be added.  If you want quick 30 second solutions, its definitely worth subscribing.

Besides this plug, here’s one video I recommend for GIS users.  It actually helps to have video extensions because as you work with data formats, conventional Windows XP, Vista and 7 typically hide extensions.


Recommended books for starting with GIS

When I started learning GIS about 5-6 years I go, I actually started in a university second year course. People say “textbooks” are probably one of the most marked up resources, and they are. So below I am sharing some of the resources I have used and some that I might recommend.

If you’re planning on starting to use GIS, a number of the ESRI-related resources do come with a 6-month trial version with all the lovely bells and whistles. Personally, I find the ESRI software more “value-added” with the software and tutorials with matching datasets.

Here’s a picture of some resources I keep on my shelf for reference:
GIS Tutorial Books

Textbook from second-year course:
Cartography: Thematic Map Design by Borden D. Dent

(Older version) Cartography: Thematic Map Design by Borden D. Dent

Books that are avail through ESRI press (comes with tutorials, datasets and 180-day trial version of ArcGIS 10 software)
GIS Tutorial 1: Basic Workbook, 10.1 Edition by Wilpen L. Gorr, Kristen S. Kurkland (for ArcGIS 10 users)

GIS Tutorial 2: Spatial Analysis Workbook by David W. Allen (for ArcGIS 10 users)

GIS Tutorial 3: Advanced Workbook by David W. Allen (for ArcGIS 10 users)

GIS Tutorial: Workbook for ArcView 9 by Wilpen L. Gorr (For ArcGIS 9 users)

You can’t go wrong with a Dummies book.
GIS For Dummies by Micael N. DeMers