Global Mapper

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The trial is not time limited, serving as a GIS viewer. Registration is required to enable advanced features. Purchase here.

If you work with geographic data from many sources, then Global Mapper is an essential instrument that can effortlessly access and align information "on the fly".  Global Mapper is the GIS equivalent of the Rosetta Stone. It not only can bring in a babble of data from different coordinate systems and file formats, but also clip and export files in hundreds of different ways according to your needs.

When the program developer chose the name "Global", his objective went beyond finesse with a myriad of data types. He succeeds in pulling together functions that address almost every GIS need*. With Global Mapper you can:  

  • Convert files individually or by batch, addressing entire directories at one time if desired

  • View all data layers in 3D when a Digital Elevation Model is loaded. Easily rotate through hillshade options, either from a top-down perspective or freely positioned oblique views.

  • Georeference imagery to a coordinate system using 1st order polynomial and Delaunay triangulation (piecewise affine) methods.

  • Digitize point, line and area objects or edit existing vector shapes. Measure distances and areas.

  • Track GPS positions in real time.

  • Calculate line of sight and cut-and-fill volume.

  • Grid 3D point data.

  • Script repetitive tasks.

  • Do even more as detailed below...

Global Mapper includes the ability to directly access the entire TerraServer database of USGS satellite imagery and topographic maps free of charge. When you are connected to the Internet, that means you can load a vector file for an area anywhere in the US and within seconds add an orthophoto or topo map overlay. Global Mapper can also access downloadable data from other servers around the world.

Perhaps one of Global Mapper's strongest hands is user support. Its Yahoo forum is active with prompt replies to even the most esoteric technical questions.

Download the free trial and experiment with most functions. The trial is not time limited and allows you to load up to four data layers at a time. Line-of-sight, advanced 3D, printing, exporting and some other functions are not available until the program is registered.

Generate Contours

Line-of-Sight Profile

Transparency and Blending

Quick Summary of Global Mapper Features
  • Supports viewing of dozens of the most common data formats, including DLG-O, DRG, DOQ, DEM, DGN, DXF, SDTS DLG, SDTS DEM, ECW, MrSID, ESRI Shapefiles, E00, MapInfo MIF/MID, MapInfo TAB/MAP, GTOPO30, TerrainBase, SRTM, ETOPO2, ENVI DEM, JPG, PNG, BIL, BSQ, BIP, XYZ, Tiger/Line, Arc Vector Coverages, VPF (VMAP, DNC), S-57, ADRG, ASRP, CADRG, CIB, JPEG2000, GIF, NOS/GEO, Garmin PCX5, GPX (GPS eXchange Format), OziExplorer WPT/PLT, ASTER DEM (HDF and GeoTIFF formats), ASTER L1A/L1B imagery, Zmap Plus Grids, LIDAR LAS, Marplot MIE, DHM (Swiss DEM), MODIS imagery, NTF Grids, etc.
  • Provides direct access to the complete TerraServer satellite imagery and topographic map archive for the entire US.
  • Supports true 3D viewing of loaded elevation data including draping of any loaded imagery and vector data over the 3D surface. Vertical and perspective 3D views.
  • Crop, reproject, and merge any combination of raster data and elevation data, including DRGs. You can also crop data to an area feature.
  • DIGITIZING SUPPORT. You can digitize new vector (area, line, and point) features by drawing them with the mouse. You can also edit existing vector features. Newly created and editing features can be saved to any of the supported export formats. In addition, shapes like rectangles, circles, ellipses, arcs, and concentric range rings. can be easily drawn as well.
  • GPS SUPPORT. You can track a compatible GPS device connected to your computer's serial port or USB port in real-time over any loaded data. In addition, you can mark waypoints at the current GPS location and record a tracklog of where your GPS device has been while connected, all seamless with your loaded map data!
  • EXPORT SUPPORT. You can export both vector, raster, and elevation data to a variety of formats (see below). You can merge any combination of data sets, regardless of source scale, type, and projection. You can also breakup your data into a regularly spaced grid on export if you'd like as well. Here is a partial list of supported export types.
    • Vector Data (i.e. DLGs, Shapefiles, DXF, etc.)
      • Arc Ungenerate format
      • AutoCAD DXF format
      • CDF format
      • CSV format
      • ESRI Shapefile format
      • Garmin PCX5 TRK and WPT formats
      • GPX (GPS eXchange Format)
      • InRoads ASCII format
      • Landmark Graphics format
      • MapGen format
      • MapInfo MIF/MID format
      • MatLab format
      • MOSS format
      • NIMA ASC format
      • PLS CADD XYZ Grid file format
      • Simple ASCII Text format
      • Surfer BLN format
      • SVG (Scalable Vector Graphic) format
      • Tsunami OVR format
      • USGS DLG-O format
    • Raster Data (i.e. DRGs, DOQs, etc.)
      • BIL/BIP/BSQ formats
      • ECW format
      • GeoTIFF format
      • JPG format
    • Elevation Data (i.e. DEMs, etc.)
      • Arc ASCII Grid format
      • BIL format
      • BT (Binary Terrain) format
      • DXF (3D-point, 3D-mesh, and 3D-face) formats
      • Float/Grid file format
      • Geosoft Grid format
      • GeoTIFF DEM format
      • Gravsoft Grid format
      • Leveller Heightfield file format
      • MapMaker Terrain file format
      • PLS CADD XYZ Grid file format
      • RockWorks Grid format
      • STL format
      • Surfer Grid (ASCII and binary) formats
      • Terragen Terrain file format
      • USGS DEM format
      • VRML format
      • XYZ ASCII Grid format
      • Zmap Plus Grid format
  • IMAGE RECTIFICATION. You can graphically rectify (georeference) any JPG, TIFF, or PNG image and save the results to a new fully georeferenced image. Vector data can also have a rectification process applied to it after loading to allow morphing vector data to fit other data sets. Global Mapper provides a choice of 1st order polynomial and Delaunay triangulation (piecewise affine) methods.
  • CONTOUR GENERATION. You can create contours for any combination of elevation data. You can also specify the contour interval to use. The generated contour data can then be exported to any of the supported vector export formats (see previous item for a list).
  • Automatic triangulation and gridding of 3D point data sets, such as ASCII XYZ files. This allows you to convert a set of elevation samples into a fully gridded data set, which can then be used for contour generation, line of sight analysis, and view shed analysis, among other things. The data can also be exported to any of the supported elevation grid formats, such as USGS DEM.
  • Advanced screen capture. You can capture the contents of the screen to a BMP, JPG, PNG, or (Geo)TIFF file of user-specified resolution.
  • Batch conversion of almost any input data data files to any compatible export type.
  • Auto-clip collar for DRGs. You can now have the collar of USGS DRG files automatically clipped off. This allows you to seamlessly view a collection of adjacent DRG files.
  • Supports opening SDTS DLG, SDTS DEM, and most other file types directly from .tar.gz and .zip archives. This saves the major headache of decompressing each SDTS transfer into a separate directory.
  • Comprehensive view shed analysis using loaded elevation grid data from a user-specified location, transmitter height, and radius.
  • 3D Path Profiling and Line of Sight (LOS) capabilities, including receiver/transmitter heights, minimum clearance, and earth curvature options.
  • Advanced measurement capabilities, including multi-segment path lengths and headings, enclosed area, and cut-and-fill volume calculations either along a path or within an enclosed area.
  • Ability to link vector feature attributes to web sites or files.
  • Support the latest DEM and SDTS DEM formats, including decimeter DEMs.
  • Supports opening DLG-O and DEM files directly from gzipped archives. This means that you can save space and hassle by not having to decompress the data after you download it.
  • Slide over text. When you move your cursor around the screen you'll get a description of the nearest feature automatically displayed in the status bar.
  • Supports keyboard navigation. You can pan about with the arrow keys and zoom in/out with the page up/page down keys.
  • Search and edit load vector data by name, attribute value, or description.
  • And much more!

*Note Regarding Global Mapper Functions: Global Mapper is optimized for accessing, viewing and converting spatial data. It also performs other functions like 3D viewing very well. Global Mapper, however, is not optimized for digitizing, editing object attributes, attribute queries or spatial analysis of data. For best results, combine the features of Global Mapper with a dedicated Geographic Information System like the TatukGIS Editor. If you need more precision to rectify and georeference images, consider the TatukGIS Aerial Imagery Corrector (AIC). The TatukGIS AIC gives 2nd and 3rd order polynomial rectification, image mosaic functions and SQL image storage solutions needed for more advanced photogrammetry.

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