If you saw GIS-Lite in isolation, you might imagine it to be pretty much anything not quite GIS. We’re starting to use the word at TerraGo to help explain part of what we do for people — let them transform what would otherwise be a static document into a lightweight location-enabled interactive application. But that’s a mouthful, so we call it GIS-Lite.
One of the reasons we are thinking in terms of GIS-Lite is to illustrate how at once a GeoPDF document with TerraGo Toolbar is not GIS, but is an intimate connection to the GIS and the person who created the document in the first place. When talking with folks about GeoPDF and Toolbar, people make comparisons to pseudo-alternatives like web applications or lightweight GIS software, which shows we failed to make our point: it’s not an either-or proposition. Web apps and GIS programs are distinct and don’t really compete directly at all, although there might be a superficial feature comparison here or there. Paper and PowerPoint are the competition. The real question is would the documents you create with ArcMap be more valuable if people could use Toolbar to take advantage of the geospatial context and data used to create that document? More often than not, the answer is a resounding yes.
TerraGo Publisher for ArcGIS opens up ArcMap to an unlimited audience by enabling GeoPDF documents to be consumed by TerraGo Toolbar, which can be downloaded from the TerraGo website at no cost to the end-user. Toolbar in combination in Adobe Reader provide these essential GIS-Lite capabilities:
- visualization of maps and imagery
- measurement of lengths and areas
- display and locate coordinates
- toggling layers with scale dependent visibility
- inspection of feature attributes
- geospatial markup
We say, if you can’t do the essentials, you aren’t doing GIS-Lite. Of course, you can do GIS-Lite and more with the Publisher-Toolbar solution, including sharing and repurposing of the data used to create the GeoPDF documents and finding out where the document is on Google maps with the click of the mouse. It’s not only useful, it’s fun.
Author: George Demmy, TerraGo
- See more on the TerraGo Blog
- See Also: Recorded Webinar – Deliver GIS-Lite Interactive Applications from ArcMap with TerraGo
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