GEOG 583
Geospatial System Analysis and Design

Scenario -- Select a GIS Programming Language


For this week's assignment, please imagine you have the opportunity to apply for a small grant that will enable you (or someone you are managing) to learn a new programming language.


You work for ACME GIS Associates, a respected (but slightly behind the times, as you can see from their penchant for Olde English Typography) GIS company in Tyrone, Pennsylvania. ACME wants to be a more cutting-edge GIS firm, and has therefore established a program for employees to be assigned a cost center and have it pay for resources to acquire new technologies. (At ACME, all work must be assigned to a cost center.) You have decided to apply for this program, assuming you (or someone on your team) have two months of time to learn a new programming language. You will need to describe what language you have selected. You will also need to justify your choice as a strategic one for the ACME GIS.


For this assignment, I would like you to post the following in the Lesson 7 Reading Discussion in Canvas:

  1. Identify a specific task (or set of tasks) you wish to support by developing a new tool for the ACME GIS (this can be based on anything - pick something you're familiar with at work or choose something that interests you for another reason).
  2. Identify the language you are choosing. Provide a quick justification for this choice. (~3 sentences)
  3. Describe the end-user benefits you expect to gain from choosing this language (could be specific tools, certain types of functionality, platform availability, etc... - it's up to you). (~3 sentences)
  4. Briefly mention at least two possible alternative language choices that *could* also work to support your goals. (~2 sentences)

I hope that you can use this assignment as an opportunity to think carefully about current GIS technology trends, and about how you and your organization can position yourselves for success. The perpetual technical tumult of our field is exciting, but it does require us to stay on our toes.

Grading Criteria

Please resist the temptation to advance one of your classmate's ideas incrementally - you will receive full credit on this assignment for coming up with something original. It's not a conflict if someone else selected the same language as you have in mind (for example, C++ or JavaScript), but the tasks supported and justification should be your own.

Completing this assignment is worth 5 points toward your class participation grade. This assignment is listed as the "Lesson 7 Reading Discussion" assignment in your Canvas grades.