27/08/2012

QGIS Mobile deja vu

Where to download qgis installer
It's been quite a while since I toyed with QGIS Mobile as I do not own an Android tablet. But I wanted to see how things have progressed so went back to download the qgis-installer.apk here with my smartphone's browser. Before all this happened, I changed the smartphone screen timeout to 'never timeout' because I wanted to view the total installation process and snap some shots.


After the download completed, a QGIS icon appeared on my smartphone screen. I clicked it which opened the above screen and I selected the 'Download and install QGIS' bar. The installer proceeded to show the screen below:


The screen stated Version 1.9 (build 7) would take up 83mb if downloaded and I selected OK. The installer proceeded to install the application though the screen showed it was actually 87mb as shown below:


However, after download completed, nothing happened as shown below:


Then I realized I should have installed Ministro which I proceeded to using Google Play Store. Just to play safe, I installed both Ministro and Ministro II as shown below:


This time around, the qgis-installer requested to install the QGIS application in the SD card which I selected 'Install' as shown below:
After that, the installer requested to install additional libraries which I selected OK as shown below:
This time I got results and the QGIS start-up screen as shown below:


The tips screen appeared after that. From the size of the fonts, it is obvious that the application was designed for a 10" tablet as shown below:


I closed the tips screen and the familiar QGIS workscreen just like the desktop QGIS appeared as shown below:


I then went over to the About link to look at the details of the application and note that it is still an Alpha version as shown below:


I hooked up my CSL mi 410 smartphone to the computer then looked up the insides of QGIS Mobile. I then decided that the most appropriate place to keep my GIS data would be in /Android/data/org.qgis.qgis/files and went along to create a new folder called 'gisdata' there. I stored a sample .shp file set copied and paste directly from my computer. Using QGIS Mobile, I activated the vector file the usual way I would with the desktop QGIS but using my fat index finger and out it came as shown below:


Looking up my icons in my smartphone, I could see 2 QGIS icons instead: the QGIS installer and now the QGIS application as shown below:


Well, I conclude that any smartphone will not do justice to the QGIS Mobile be it a 7" screen smartphone.  A GIS application be it on a notebook simply requires a larger screen to work effectively  thus it is no surprise that QGIS Mobile was meant I believe for a 10" tablet. Even for me, using my 4" screen smartphone for sms-ing can be difficult because I feel the touchscreen keyboard is fractionally small, what more for GIS. I am hoping my division can secure a 10" tablet next year so that I can use it to show QGIS Mobile in action and link it directly to a database server. We'll see...

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