Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Google Map Viewer & Zoho Sheet for Attributes

Student needed a map of the water wells in Arlington, along with the concentrations of fluoride present in each well. Student has no experience working with GIS. None. Absolutely.

So, within 30 minutes of work (fun work, mind you) I created an interactive map, along with an interactive attribute table, and emailed the links. As you can imagine, Student was ecstatic. You've got to love those moments...

The map can be viewed here: http://gis.uta.edu/arcmap2gmap/samples/arlingtonwells.html.

The interactive spreadsheet can be viewed here: http://zohosheet.com/view.do?url=http://gis.uta.edu/arcmap2gmap/samples/arlingtonwells.xls.

Anyone following this blog knows how much I have enjoyed creating my own customized Google Maps, developed using ArcMap2GMap, and this just gave me an excuse to create another Google Map.

But the new (to me) piece of technology I used was Zoho Sheet, a free online spreadsheet application. I exported the shapefile attributes into Excel format, and am using the Zoho API to allow users to view the attributes using Zoho. I love it that users do not need Excel on their computers. I am very impressed with how well Zoho works, even including the ability to create, edit, share, and even to create & include formulas!! For all you tagging junkies, you can even tag your spreadsheets.

Learned about Zoho via: ResourceShelf

So, I have been thinking about the applications of online spreadsheets beyond sending information to a single student. I think the potential here for sharing data and data functions with students is quite high. For example, I can create a Zoho Sheet with an illustration of the spreadsheet function necessary to convert DMS to DD. Or, perhaps I can create s sheet with various public attributes. Students then will have the option to download the table as Excel, Open Office, HTML, or PDF. Of course, the tags will allow me to organize the tables which will allow students to access them easier.

Ah, well. At the moment this idea will just have to go to the end of my growing list of ideas to explore later. Perhaps this summer I'll be able to explore this a tad bit further. At least I jotted this down here.

For those of you familiar with available Texas datasets, the Texas Water Development Board does indeed provide the public ArcIMS-driven WIID System (Water Information Integration & Dissemination), which provides interactive access to Texas wells. However, water quality values, such as fluoride content, is not available via WIID. This data is accessible in the TWDB Groundwater Database.


Ramesh said...

Hi Mapz,

Thanks for using and writing about Zoho Sheet. We have more features coming up soon. Do explore more and send us your feedback and suggestions.


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