Getting the right projection – a helpful usability feature of Manifold GIS
26 October, 2007
UCL’s licence for Manifold GIS 8.0 finally arrived. While testing the new 64-bit version I was reminded of one of the interface features of Manifold that I believe many other GIS should have as standard – a request to verify projections when a new component is added to the project.
One of the most confusing issues for new GIS users is to use projections within their workflow. Nowadays, it is common to integrate data from different sources, such as information gathered by GPS receivers with data from the Ordnance Survey, or any other data that is using a local projection. Therefore, it is important to ensure that the system ‘knows’ what the projection of each layer and image is.
Without proper configuration when trying to put all the data together, it doesn’t work because the projection of one layer doesn’t match another layer.
In Manifold GIS, when an image or vector layer is imported, when it is opened for the first time, the system asks the user to verify the projection, and opens the interface that allows the assignment of the current projection. Unfortunately, Manifold GIS does not give the option to set the most common the default projection for the locale in which the system is used – or at least set a group of favourite projections. Room for improvement there!
As for Manifold GIS 64 bit – it seems to work faster, although it was a surprise to see that in some operations the 4 cores were not busy at 100% or even 50% even though the system loads the data slowly. Apart from that, Windows Vista 64 bit is quite incompatible with many legacy applications and it is quite a pain to use. Maybe it’s time to return to Windows XP…