March 2011
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Open Source GIS Software – gvsig

Does anyone on this site use GVSIG?  I’d love to know what you think!

As you might know – I’m still a big fan of ArcView 3.3 – use it almost every day (it’s actually running now using XTools to summarize multiple fields) …  Why?  Because with ArcMap I find myself spending more time dealing with ArcMap and its bugs rather than doing actual GIS.

Smells like ArcMap ...


At a recent conference I went to someone I respect a lot said they use gvsig for some things – it’s an open source, free GIS program developed in Spain.  I’ve played with their free droid application so I had heard about it (droid users should check it out).  I downloaded it, installed it, and once I got it translated (see below) it worked fine reading shapefiles.  It reminded me a LOT of ArcView 3, with both it’s good and bad things.  Now I haven’t drawn a map on this, but I wanted to let people know about it, and get feedback about what they like or don’t like.

Here’s someone’s recent comments about what they like

Obviously – it’s free – which is a major advantage, but what I am most interested in is its stability and ability to draw data.  Can you edit data with it?  Will it make nice looking maps?  How has the long-term development path been?

If you or anyone you know has used gvsig to make a map, I’d love to post it!  I’d also love to have a map challenge between ArcMap and gvsig to see what it can do!

It isn’t an Enterprise application, but let’s explore the cutting edge.

Download information

You’ll need to switch from Spanish to English – here’s how you do that:

Across the top pull-down menus from left-right are: File | Show | Table | Window | Help.  Use Window – Preferences.

In the Preferences pop-up window, go to General – Language.  I believe you need to change to English and restart


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