Maps and GIS Geeking


Just have been diving into the different GIS (Geo Information Systems) and checking what data is already available. Of course Swiss style, each canton has it’s own GIS and different kinda data are being monitored.

Seems like in the Canton of Schaffhausen there is not so much about soil available yet. but some other interesting data of forest use.

The GIS Portal of Zurich though shows an almost complete map of soil properties of all agricultural land (not natural reserves, urban environments or forests)
Interesting is that the “Biological Activity” is only one small aspect that is being recorded and classified on 4 categories (high, normal, little, very little).

I’ll throw another one in here. is a great website which takes the local soil data from different regions (probably including the one linked above) and makes them all available and accessible through their nice online map AND (more importantly) through a sanely designed API - . If you click on a point on the map, it even shows you the API URL directly in the info menu (!!).

We have a great US based soil map from USGS which has been built over the course of the last 100 years, but it’s nearly impossible to use because the API is so f-ing complicated.

Also, I just noticed that Soilgrids is now testing a beta feature for uploading data… that’s cool! I’ll check that out also.

Hmm mchecking that soildgrids. thx @gbathree
hmmm still need to learn a lot!

and now testing this national platfrom:

very nice and well described. most of the data seems to be modelled, not measured. and obviously only the fields not the forests are mapped sofar.

For those interested in soil maps:
Soil-Atlas (from the year of soil 2015)



Soil-Map Bavaria

Let’s have also a look at LASER SCANNING TECHNICS!

A Laser Scanner is a very complex instrument and is resulting from of a very long history…

…probably not in the range of DIY: might a provocation to say that… but let’s see.

What is intersting to observe on the field of use of the laser scanners, that it is not only useful for the building and landscape industry but as well to observ the forest and messure CO2!

few links to this OPERATION AREA “FOREST”:
Einstein - Das Geheimnis der wilden Wälder - Play SRF
Wald 2.0 - Schweizer Forscher digitalisieren den Wald - Wissen - SRF
Sturmsicherer Wald - W wie Wissen - ARD | Das Erste

I’d like to add to the scientific point of view the OPERATION AREA “DESIGN”:

A new measure of quality in landscape architecture – Topology – Professor Christophe Girot
Unravelling the Digital Landscape – Professor Christophe Girot


Leica Geosystems | Leica Geosystems

so much so short,
It’s meant to be a collection of a list of links to the soil geeking topic and an input to the discussion.
Might there is contrary potential to look at and pick inspiration.

researching on perception of space and virutality: Ausstellungen |

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Consumer Tech for Mapping …is in the range of DIY.
for terrainmapping :wink: Kinect (xbox360)

#Instructible Lazer + webcam + motor

Hope you will also be thinking about environmentatl robots.[]

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o wow o * …hopefully exactly yes!

I experimented with the Balloon mapping recently.
but as i didnt bring any helium, maybe we can look into VVLS-mapping (Very very long stick)


for geology mapping (and generally, for a cool website), check out made by my friends (and former colleagues) at the University of Wisconsin. Many years ago (in 2011), I made its predecessor Earthbase (now offline as Macrostrat, while based on Earthbase, is much better)

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