Although GIS and other information technology systems continue to increase
their range of out-of-the-box capabilities, there are still several general
reasons to consider custom software development: automation of complex or
repetitive tasks; creation of a
customized application and interface; development of functionality that goes beyond what is available
in the standard software; or integration of GIS functionality with other
software components. GISmatters has the programming experience and GIS
expertise to develop and deliver such custom solutions.
Customization: Label Placement
One of the most difficult challenges in creating usable and effective
maps is the placement of annotation - the names, labels, or values
associated with features on the map. While very powerful and flexible
label placement options have been built into GIS software, there are
still situations where they fail to produce an adequate result, most
often due to overcrowding of feature labels in dense areas.
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The need to produce readable labels for very closely-spaced toxic
spill sites led Toxics Targeting
to have us develop a custom label placement algorithm to include in
their map production process stream. Our C program filters their
GIS-generated PostScript maps, repositioning the labels into readable blocks on
the fly as the map data are passed from the GIS to a printable file.