Consulting is always a mixed bag. For me it’s always been a bit inconsistent – but there have been incredibly piles of consistency from clients:
- Don’t sell me more software
- I’m tired of paying maintenance
- We bought a pile of software and it’s not helping
Over the last year or so there have been several interesting things happen:
- The Intro to QGIS class has actually gotten wildly successful. When it’s presented in a “You can edit your data and make a map” easy to understand way – People get excited.
- There was a unexpected detour into the US Virgin Islands which led to a talk called “Expand your GIS Toolbox”. The work down there lead to an idea of process over software because we used about every software under the sun to produce data for the client.
- I’ve moved to a point where I’m using Open Source for more and more clients with no degradation of data or increase in cost for anyone. In fact – it’s lead to things getting cheaper and people being happier. I’m still using commercial GIS products (like arcgis) and always will – but I’ve gleefully expanded the GIS toolbox.
All of this has (plus a bit more) led to the formation of Spatial Connect. In essence Spatial Connect is process over software. You don’t need to buy more extensions/software (in some cases you do if it’s a specialty extension). You don’t have to eliminate software you have already purchased. If you’ve got a full ESRI Enterprise implementation – this isn’t for you. If you’re working along with a budget that won’t allow a full commercial GIS – this will work. Especially if you’re struggling with Arceditor, a pile of shapefiles, and a budget that won’t allow more software. Even better – you’ve nothing. If you have no clue where to start – why not start here.
Software supported in Spatial Connect:
- QGIS – Open Source Desktop editing Package. It runs on Mac, Linux, Windows and is a very capable at manipulating and displaying GIS data.
- PostGIS/Postgresql – Spatial Database for maintaining your data. PLus it gets you out of shapefiles and into something more enterprise worthy.
- Geoserver – Share your data through standard OGC services to other software.
- Fulcrum – Mobile data collection. It’s not open source but it is the best mobile data collection software out. We aren’t a reseller for this software…but it is the only one we will support in Spatial Connect.
Before you go “YOU’RE SELLING MORE SOFTWARE”. NRGS is selling a service. Let us help you maintain and grow your GIS using this software. Money normally used for software purchase, software maintenance, etc, can be used for equipment, services, and software you might need but couldn’t afford before. The best part is we try to take the pain out of the setup. We can help you set it up, maintain it, and grow it. We’ve moved one client into this setup and will be moving a second shortly. It’s also flexible. Nothing is locking your data away or making it unusable by other software.
There are classes to support the concept of Spatial Connect:
- Introduction to QGIS
- QGIS: data and editing – Coming Soon
- QGIS: Serving, Storing, and Sharing Data – Coming Soon
- Introduction to Fulcrum Mobile Application – Coming Soon
So what does this cost? I’m currently looking at different models for pricing for services. Right now I’m leaning into a “size of the client” model. Larger clients will pay more – smaller clients pay less. Ultimately – it’s all about cost. This has to be affordable for you. To that end we will work to make sure it is affordable.
Who are we targeting? Everyone. You are the expert on what you need to do – let us help you push that knowledge into a GIS.
Finally – this isn’t a static product. It’s going to change as the software grows changes. We hope to continue adding software, ideas, and pieces to Spatial Connect to better serve you.