a year of anniversaries and change

So, it’s 5 years since OSGeo was formed- that’s pretty cool! Spurred on by this post, I thought I would say a little bit about my involvement with OSGeo, and also rather clumsily segue this into an announcement about my impending change of job. It’s true- after years of not really thinking of myself as an archaeologist any longer, but rather ‘someone who works in an archaeological unit”, I’ve finally gone and got myself a real job.

sunday tip day convert a shapefile to text with linux

Never apologise for delayed posts… this is a Sunday Tip Day post, not a Thursday! Anyhow… I just found a super little cross-platform utility that takes shapefiles and dumps them to a variety of text-based formats. Download it here, and simply unzip it to use it. There isn’t much documentation, but basically your options are to download to gpx or spreadsheet. The following gives you a simple delimited text file with the coordinates and values from your attribute table:

slightly belated thursday tip day find and replace text in multiple files

Apologies for the delay- it’s been a roller-coaster week at Archaeogeek Towers due to family health issues. Hopefully it’s getting sorted now though. In the process of preparing Portable GIS, I needed to change a string in multiple files of multiple formats within multiple folders. I looked at various windows- based options, most of which had a charge associated with them, but one of my colleagues suggested a linux approach.

thursday tip day on usb keys at the linux command line

How to mount a USB stick in Ubuntu server using the command prompt only: Do a sudo tail -f /var/log/syslog and plug the usb drive in. Look for lines like these: Feb 18 12:58:32 shuchi kernel: [17192272.616000] sda: assuming drive cache: write through Feb 18 12:58:32 shuchi kernel: [17192272.616000] sda: sda1 Make a directory in /media named usbdrive. Mount it like this: sudo mount /dev/sda1 /media/usbdrive To unmount before ejecting: sudo umount /media/usbdrive

archaeogeeks quick february round up

February’s quick links: Via my new colleague (Hi Ben), some tutorials for using QGIS and GRASS as opposed to (or in conjunction with) ArcGIS on an archaeological project Andlinux- a different way of accessing linux-based programmes without going through cygwin. I’ve managed to get GRASS installed, though I haven’t tried it out in anger yet. A n00bs guide to installing linux programmes from source. Don’t be scared, it’s not that bad, though I’d add in how to get the command line to send it’s output to a log file for those times when it all goes wrong and you didn’t happen to catch the error as it scrolled past really fast…

thursday tip day different ways to get help at the linux command line

Man is not the only option for help about a command in linux. whatis — Display a summary of a command (rather than the entire manual) apropos — Display a list of commands that pertain to (are apropos to) a keyword whereis — Display information about the location of a command: the executable, the source code (if any), and the man pages. which — Display which version of a command will execute (for when there are two, or more, commands with the same name installed on the system).

thursday tip day explaining the unix filesystem

For all linux/Unix n00bs out there, here’s a really good explanation of the layout of the Unix filesytem. What’s in a file name? The files on a UNIX machine are organized in a hierarchy. The very top of the hierarchy is / —commonly referred to as “slash” or “the root directory.” If you change your working directory to / and run ls, you’ll see several subdirectories with cryptic names like etc, bin, var, home, and tmp.

thursday tip day linux script command

For all you linux n00bs out there just getting into compiling and installing programmes, this is really handy when your compilation fails and you’ve just watched reams of text scroll past with no chance to read what it says. Basically it records the I/O of a command line session into a log file for later perusal. Before entering your command in the terminal, type: script yourscript.log At the end of the session, press: