After a long delay, I finally managed to put out a release of Portable GIS version 6 this week. You can find it here: https://portablegis.xyz/post/get, and for details of the software versions see the documentation https://portable-gis-docs.readthedocs.io/user_docs.html#included-software-with-versions. This new version doesn’t just include later (I’d like to say latest but that would be fibbing) versions of the included software, but also includes a number of enhancements and infrastructure improvements behind the scenes.
FOSS4GUK (https://uk.osgeo.org/foss4guk2019/) came and went a week or so ago, in Edinburgh, and to my mind it was a game-changer for our UK events. This is not going to be a detailed post about how great it was (yes it was great), and how good the venue was (also great), but a reflection on how it was different. For one, there were 250 attendees, which is a step up from previous events.
This week I’m in Bolsena at the 10th annual Geonetwork codesprint. Geonetwork is the metadata catalogue that we (being Astun Technology) use to deliver our metadata catalogues, for INSPIRE, and for Government customers. I recently asked if I could join the Project Steering Group for Geonetwork, and happily was accepted, and I was then asked if I would like to come along to this event. Coding in the sun, in Italy, in June, what a trial!
I’m delighted to announce that Portable GIS has been accepted as an official OSGeo Community Project! From a technical perspective, this is the culmination of several months work behind the scenes getting the proper code repository set up here, creating the website, improving the documentation, and formalising the open source license. As a colleague said recently, Portable GIS has moved from being (effectively) freeware, to proper open source. So, there are now official guidelines on how to contribute to Portable GIS development, and on the license terms under which you can use and contribute.
I recently decided to move this blog from octopress, hosted on a commercial site, to hugo, hosted on gitlab pages. Why? # I don’t care that Octopress hasn’t been updated for a while but I do care that I didn’t understand what it was doing- I’m not a Ruby/Jekyll/Whatever person. I never took the time to understand how it worked under the hood, my bad. I wasn’t using 99% of the facilities offered with the commercial host.
TL;DR How not to burn out, or how I work, the 2017 edition I’ve always suffered from anxiety and stress in my work. It’s a first-world problem, sure, but it’s there, and tangible, causing health issues (blood pressure high enough to frighten most health-care professionals, and surviving on approximately 3-4 hours sleep a night, most nights). Before Christmas 2016 I felt as if I was hitting some sort of tipping point, where I needed to fix things, or burn out.
Back in June, which seems a long time ago now, we (OSGeo:UK) ran a mini FOSS4G event at the Ordnance Survey offices in Southampton, UK. It was a big success, well attended, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, which is always nice. This is not a post about the event, per se (perhaps in retrospect going straight on to another event the week after was a bad idea). Others have posted about this, and there’s always the #foss4guk hashtag on twitter if you’re interested.
I’m pleased to announce the latest release of Portable GIS. This version (v5.6) has the following changes: QGIS 2.14.1 LTR By popular demand: Geoserver 2.8 You can download the setup exe and the md5 checksum here. Older versions are still available but have been archived to avoid confusion. As always, please let me know of any problems via the Portable GIS google group. Note that I will shortly be publicising a GitLabs repository for the changed files, along with developer and user documentation, to allow people to roll their own versions or contribute to development.
Over the summer I was asked to contribute a piece on what I thought the future of “Open Geospatial” would be in 2020, for the AGI (Association for Geographic Information) and their Foresight Study on the Geospatial Industry in 2020. This follows on from an earlier study in 2010, which attempted to predict what the state of the Geospatial Industry would be like in 2015, and that I also contributed to.
Since Astun Technology has quite a geographically distributed workforce (OK, we are all in the UK, but still), we make the effort to get together every three months or so for meetings, merriment, and some geeky hacking. Our “hackastun” events are a great chance for those of us who deal more with the finished software to do a bit of coding, even if it is just messing around with python.