You know the story about the ugly duckling. Poor little chap; taken for granted, disregarded, under-valued. Then one day he turns into a beautiful swan.
Is Data the Ugly Duckling of GIS?
In some ways that is GIS data. It was not that long ago that data was incredibly hard to find. Everything changed in the mid-2000’s with Google maps, Open Streetmap and others stepping up. Suddenly a whole variety of base maps were available. Many at little or no cost. In addition, data which sits on top of these basemaps – point, line and polygon layers in GIS speak – also was easier to find.
From famine to feast … data became taken for granted
Just like the ugly duckling data became under-valued. Ubiquitous and free was the assumption. How unfortunate!
Let me ask you this. How many projects stall because of a data problem? That is missing data, inaccurate data, or lack of understanding on how to find, convert and publish data. From our experience many.