Newbie from Sacramento

Hi all,
I'm the new guy on the forums. I have been "lurking" for a week or two and decided I should introduce myself.
I'm a Econ major by training (go Sac State!), but the majority of my work involves Geographic Information Systems and Spatial Databases. I've been a "passive" user of R and the GEO package for a couple of years now.
I'd like to learn a lot and give a lot to the forums when my 3 year old and 8 month old daughters allow daddy some time! :yup:

Thanks guys!
Do you also use QGIS or ArcGIS for your spatial analyses? Any experience with GeoDa?
I do use ARCGIS with the spatial and geostatistical extensions. I ahve played with QGIS, but I think it needs a little more maturation for production level work for a client.

I have not used GEODA, but I've looked at the docs and tuts. Too much software...too little time.


Probably A Mammal
I know the feeling, but when it comes to analysis, ArcGIS is not going to cut it (though, with arcpy for 10.1, you have a lot better ways to access your data with direct conversion to and from NumPy arrays). GeoDa is built for doing exploratory spatial data analysis (ESDA) as well as spatial lag and error models. I think I read that ArcGIS might be looking to incorporate some functionality like that.

I agree that QGIS needs to mature. There are some annoying differences, such as not being able to subset (definition query) a data set after a join. But I do like it's easy access to database and certainly interfaces databases in a better way (to me) than ArcGIS. To me, if I could run spatial queries in ArcGIS, say, to an SDE database, I'd be golden. It's faster and you don't have to waste time running Tools. With QGIS, it's database driven (as most open-source tools seem to be in this regard--compare geoDjango to ArcGIS web services). This makes it convenient to do things at the database level. Requires more skill, but that access is powerful! But like I said, with the new arcpy module, you can start making use of tools directly on accessing data layers (not to mention you can now handle a lot of things in arcpy such as edit sessions and domains).

I think QGIS can be used at a production level, but it depends on the client's needs and training. Luckily, there's a spatial StackExchange to get help at!
Welcome fellow hornet. :) You've come to the right place.. The guys here are experts, and very willing to help out IF you've done you're homework ahead of time. I'm an electronic engineering student myself, but when mounds of data return testing experimental circuits, I had to turn to R. Of course I struggled myself for a while, pounding my head against the learning curve and trolling the web for answers. Until I found this site.. Much of what I had been doing was made much clearer by reading the geniusly written code posted in the R section. Good luck on the impending semester!