Monday 18 May 2015

Turning GeoTIFF into TIFF + worldfile (QGIS)

hi all,
after some weeks I go on with the videotutorial from the Project Tovel. Until now we saw how to download some Open Data for our GIS, how to load georeferenced raster level in QGIS, how to georeference historical maps.
Today I will show something particular, that probably many of you will not need very often working on landscape archaeological project, but that will be more important to manage excavation GIS: how to turn a GeoTIFF picture into a TIFF + worldfile image.
As some of you will know a GeoTIFF is a particular kind of raster data in which the georeferencing values are embedded within the TIFF itself. This option can be a nice solution for a topographer but it is extremely annoying for archaeologists. The reason is simple: topographers often work on pictures or maps that are ready to be used, without the necessity of any photo-editing, which (on the contrary) is an important phase in archaeological photo-mapping process (e.g. for the "Aramus method"). The primary difference between a GeoTIFF and a TIFF + worldfile image is that it is not possible to modify the first one without loosing the georeferencing values (which are integrated in the picture), while it is possible to perform some photo-editing operations (change the colors, balance the brightness and contrast, etc...) in the second one, without problems, being the geolocalization data stored in a separate file (the worldfile).
For this reason working with raster images and worldfile is often the best choice for archaeological GIS (especially for excavation), where it can be useful to "erase" all the part of the photo which are outside the area of interest (e.g. outside the rectification region) and to take advantage of transparency in overlapping different raster levels (which can correspond to different stratigraphic levels).
As I wrote previously, the videotutorial I prepared using the data of Project Tovel simply shows how to turn a GeoTIFF, currently the unique option for QGIS georeferencing module) into a TIFF and a worldfile, a more useful format, without exiting the software.

Have a nice day!

Sunday 3 May 2015

Fusion + Quantum GIS: an Open Source approach for managing LIDAR data

As I was recently asked by some students here at Lund university to provide them with some "alternative" solution (compared to the ArcGIS-based workflow) to import LIDAR data in GIS, I ran into this software package named Fusion ( It has been developed by a branch of the US Forest Service to manage and analyze LIDAR data. Basically, by using Fusion, users are enabled to convert .las binary data format into a .txt file. Then, the data can be imported in QGIS and filtered based on the classification codes associated to the file itself. Here you can find a short video-tutorial which can help you in understanding the whole data-processing workflow (p.s. please ignore the MS Windows background! :-) ).

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