QTopo

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QTopo

Postby MattS » Thu 18 Apr, 2019 8:57 am

Hi to everyone. I've read a bit of the sporadic discussion on here regarding QTopo, so as one of the creators I thought I'd start to maintain some sort of presence here.

Happy to field any comments, complaints, criticisms, compliments or anything that doesn't fit into those categories. I do stress though, this is an informal feedback path - if you want anything to absolutely be addressed in a timely manner, the best avenue for that is to email opendata@dnrme.qld.gov.au

Latest news/announcements/stuff:

- We've just had an update to the QTopo basemap that you see on the QTopo site
- The downloadable 25K, 50K and 100K maps have also been updated
- Downloadable maps will soon be available in an Image Topographic format i.e. contours and other map info over an imagery base
- Start of gradual introduction of indigenous place names - in this release you will notice some island names have been given dual naming. Hopefully this is just the start of a concerted push to record and display more indigenous place names
MattS
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Re: QTopo

Postby dalehikes » Thu 18 Apr, 2019 12:26 pm

Hi Matt,

QTopo is an amazing resource for us bushwalkers, I really appreciate the work that has gone into it and how easy it is to use, both printing maps and as an on the go gps overlay.

I love the idea of introducing indigenous place names, our mountains named with surnames of early settlers is wrong and doesn't represent anything with the areas r their heritage. Sunmap used to include some indigenous names on their maps. They add an extra layer of intrigue I feel.

One thing I'd like to see addressed is cadastral lines for lots and properties.
The layer lines are simply far too faint, to the point where important easements are almost invisible.
Trying to plan a route is difficult with QTOPO maps as the cadastral lines are vital to determining where we can and can't go..

Other, less important things are including rocky outcrops and cliff lines. I understand the contour lines are quite accurate on qtopo and anyone in their right mind wouldn't think that a tight bunch of countours is a nice slope to walk down, however there are cliffs out there that don't seem so obvious. This would eliminate major mistakes in route planning.

Again, hugely appreciate what QTOPO is and I hope the indigenous place names are rolled out quickly and with lots of mountains included. I have read many texts detailing the old indigenous names and there is lots of fantastic names out there!
dalehikes
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Re: QTopo

Postby gbagua » Tue 23 Apr, 2019 3:20 pm

It would be useful for users to know whether there is an app(s) on both iPhone and Android devices that lets you upload, display, read correctly and save those maps.

Cheers!
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Re: QTopo

Postby MattS » Tue 23 Apr, 2019 3:58 pm

dalehikes wrote:Hi Matt,

QTopo is an amazing resource for us bushwalkers, I really appreciate the work that has gone into it and how easy it is to use, both printing maps and as an on the go gps overlay.

I love the idea of introducing indigenous place names, our mountains named with surnames of early settlers is wrong and doesn't represent anything with the areas r their heritage. Sunmap used to include some indigenous names on their maps. They add an extra layer of intrigue I feel.


Thanks for the feedback. Like I said, hopefully we might start seeing a more concerted push to record and display indigenous name - not sure exactly what shape and form this might involve, but there's a lot of people in our Department very keen to see this happen.

The funny thing that not many people realise is that we are actually Sunmap, or what has become of it. We just stopped using the branding going back about 10 years.

dalehikes wrote:One thing I'd like to see addressed is cadastral lines for lots and properties.
The layer lines are simply far too faint, to the point where important easements are almost invisible.
Trying to plan a route is difficult with QTOPO maps as the cadastral lines are vital to determining where we can and can't go..


We'll have a look at this to see if we can make it work in the next release. QTopo walks the line between being a map in the traditional sense and a basemap in the GIS world. One thing we mindful on is that users will sometimes overlay a more current cadastre over QTopo, so we're a little limited in how prominent we can make cadastral lines given that they will be out of date by up to 6 months by the time we are able to do a new release, whereas we don't have that issue with most of the other spatial data we use in this case. But like I said, we'll have a look to see if we can make them a little more prominent.

dalehikes wrote:Other, less important things are including rocky outcrops and cliff lines. I understand the contour lines are quite accurate on qtopo and anyone in their right mind wouldn't think that a tight bunch of countours is a nice slope to walk down, however there are cliffs out there that don't seem so obvious. This would eliminate major mistakes in route planning.


One of reasons the old topo maps stopped being produced was the time involved in created a single 1:25000 line map was a bit prohibitive. The reason we've been able to "resurrect" topo maps with QTopo is that we've been able to use state-wide datasets to create maps over the entire state. Unfortunately cutting out sections of contours for cliff lines and picking out rocky outcrops was manual work which was possible in the old school way of doing things, but not so much in the automated world we're operating in.

That said, we're always looking at refining QTopo and the way we create it. If there is an easier way of recreating these cartographic niceties then we're all for it.
MattS
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Re: QTopo

Postby MattS » Tue 23 Apr, 2019 4:43 pm

gbagua wrote:It would be useful for users to know whether there is an app(s) on both iPhone and Android devices that lets you upload, display, read correctly and save those maps.

Cheers!


Avenza Maps is what we've recommended for the geoPDF's but it's compatability has been patchy over the years. It's hard for us to fully recommend apps due to them being developed by third-parties. I'm sure there are other apps but as a government employee recommending one of another is fraught. I would however be able to outline which is them works OK though which is what I plan to do and what we do with Avenza. Our core output is the app and the map service that sits inside it and the PDF maps. It's not really all that feasible to continually test all apps and monitor for new apps, although we probably should do it more than we currently do. There's always room for improvement in our processes!

LocusMaps is one Android app that was mentioned in other threads, but I've not used it yet.

I've actually been mucking around after reading some of the discussion elsewhere on the forum about converting QTopo to MapBox Tiles and loading them into various apps. I've been able to successfully convert to the MBTiles format via ArcGIS Tile Packages (TPK format)and an open source python package.

I've imported them successfully to the iOS apps MapTiler GeoEditor and iGeoTrans X (Lite edition), but haven't tested them out in the field. I'm an Apple guy so I just loaded it onto my phone, but when I get some free air here at work I plan on loading some onto our work tablets and spending a half-day testing (a rare treat for us these days!).

I'd be interested if anyone was willing to act as a guinea pig to test them out. At the moment I can supply 1:25000 areas which run at around the 25MB mark. These are essentially what you'd see in the QTopo app, just in MBTiles format.

A few caveats:

1. There no map grid or graticules on these files. Part of the reason I haven't is I'm not sure whether they're needed when you can use you GPS - users can inform on this as part of the testing. The other and more accurate part of the reason is that I've been developing this in my spare time and haven't worked out a good way to display grids yet.
2. There should be no expectation that this will be a product in it's own right on any on-going basis. Obviously is people are into it and it doesn't take a huge effort to generate them then that would be a big plus. But I have no real plan at this stage of how these might be stored and made available to the public. Or if my bosses deem it worthy.
3. Legal stuff: the reader/user accepts all risks and responsibility for losses, damages, costs and other consequences resulting directly or indirectly from using this information. Yanno, the usual stuff...

So, yeah, if you're keen to try them out, hit me up here with where you might be heading out to and I'll see if I can hook you up!
MattS
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Re: QTopo

Postby bauplenut » Sat 27 Apr, 2019 9:22 am

G'day Matt,

Congrats on Qtopo, great resource, and look forward to it's evolution and enhancement. I am still learning Qtopo full capability.

Whilst cliff lines and chasms etc detail would be nice, we don't get that anyway on the old printed maps 1:50 and 1:100 topos. But using Image Topo from Qtopo on a 1:25,000 download, provides good idea of such details mostly. Just spent a week in White Mountains and combination of Qtopo downloaded and printed Image Topo and Topographic maps worked fine to identify likely cliffs and chasms (mostly) and navigate the rough stuff.

Next step for me is to try and download, GeoRef then upload to phone, one day.

Long term will QLD Govt be looking at providing Avenza in-app map purchase like NSW topo maps 1:50,000 which are already georef ?

I notice that in Avenza one can get in-app download QLD 1:100,000 wetland maps which appear to be georef'd, would be good to have similar in topo and image format, but at better than 1:100,000 would be required. That would negate a users need to download QTOPO map to PDF and GeoRef map then upload to Avenza app on phone (reduce risk of user error in georef'ing).

There may be better than Avenza out there, happy to take advice, but it is all I know right now, and have not used much yet.

Happy to be guinea pig for Townsville area to test out MBT on iPhone. Particularly Paluma, Mount Spec and Mt Elliot areas.

Regards

Dyso
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Re: QTopo

Postby MattS » Wed 22 May, 2019 12:19 pm

bauplenut wrote:G'day Matt,

Congrats on Qtopo, great resource, and look forward to it's evolution and enhancement. I am still learning Qtopo full capability.

Whilst cliff lines and chasms etc detail would be nice, we don't get that anyway on the old printed maps 1:50 and 1:100 topos. But using Image Topo from Qtopo on a 1:25,000 download, provides good idea of such details mostly. Just spent a week in White Mountains and combination of Qtopo downloaded and printed Image Topo and Topographic maps worked fine to identify likely cliffs and chasms (mostly) and navigate the rough stuff.

Next step for me is to try and download, GeoRef then upload to phone, one day.

Long term will QLD Govt be looking at providing Avenza in-app map purchase like NSW topo maps 1:50,000 which are already georef ?

I notice that in Avenza one can get in-app download QLD 1:100,000 wetland maps which appear to be georef'd, would be good to have similar in topo and image format, but at better than 1:100,000 would be required. That would negate a users need to download QTOPO map to PDF and GeoRef map then upload to Avenza app on phone (reduce risk of user error in georef'ing).

There may be better than Avenza out there, happy to take advice, but it is all I know right now, and have not used much yet.

Happy to be guinea pig for Townsville area to test out MBT on iPhone. Particularly Paluma, Mount Spec and Mt Elliot areas.

Regards

Dyso


Many apologies for the lateness of this response.

For some reason, I've run into problems converting this time around. Because the Python package I'm using is open source and not currently supported, I have to assess whether it'sd something that's solveable and able to maintained long-term. I'll keep investigating.

With the Avenza "store"... I think the volume of maps we have prohibits that. I'm not sure how NSW upload theirs, but I don't think it would be high on our list of priorities. If you do want to download maps without bothering to go through the QTopo app you can always enter the following URL into your browser: http://qtopo.dnrm.qld.gov.au/QTopoMaps/ ... 25k/QTopo_<<<map no.>>>.pdf. Obviously, you would sub in whichever map sheet number you were after eg. 9444-12. And if you wanted 1: 50000 or 1:100000, then sub in 50k or 100k in place of 25k.
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Re: QTopo

Postby logicalor » Wed 29 May, 2019 6:08 pm

Thank you for your contribution to QTopo - it is an amazing resource which I and many others in Brisbane Bushwalkers Club use on a regular basis.

I (with some help from another Brisbane Bushwalkers member) devised a method some time ago to convert QTopo GeoPDF to GeoTiff and subsequently MBTiles format for use in the Locus Map Android app, and Garmin KMZ for use on Garmin GPS handsets.

I created a repository of my converted maps here: https://shaun.id.au/qtopo-exports.html

These were created nearly a year ago so are probably out of date. Also, the converted maps, because they convert the standard map sheets, include the borders including the legend. This is not a big problem, but at some point I will probably adjust my scripts to crop the GeoTiffs before converting to MBTiles / Garmin KMZ.

If anyone would like a copy of the scripts I used to convert QTopo GeoPDF, I am more than happy to put them somewhere online - perhaps Github.

Cheers
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Re: QTopo

Postby ken333 » Thu 30 May, 2019 4:50 pm

Thanks to you and your team for providing the QTopo maps. They are very useful, especially in areas where there arn't any 25k maps available. Another Android app that can access the QTopo maps is Australia Topo Maps. I havnt used it for a while, but there are some details here:
viewtopic.php?f=21&t=24062&hilit=australia+topo
Oruxmaps can also access the QTopo maps, but the URL and other data needs to be entered manually. Theres details of how to do this in this forum. Oruxmaps can use the GetLost GeoTiff maps, and also some GeoPDF maps, so maybe it can access the QTopo maps using these.
It would be useful if the Desktop version of QTopo could import and export gpx and/or kml files. I think it supports CSV and Shape files and I suppose these can be converted to/from gpx files.
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Re: QTopo

Postby ken333 » Sun 09 Jun, 2019 4:38 pm

The QTopo PDF maps work with Oruxmaps. Open the QTopo website and drag-zoom to the required place. Or use Search. Tap 'Click here to' - 'Download Standard Map Sheet'. Select a scale. Tap Cancel and wait for the map boundaries, names and numbers to show on the map. Remember the number. Tap 'Click here to' - 'Download Standard Map Sheet'. Select a scale - Next. Enter the map number (including -). Tap Topographic Map. When the map finishes downloading, use File Manager to Move or Copy the PDF map to the oruxmaps/mapfiles folder on the Android. Change the map name (Rename) if required. Open Oruxmaps. It will show the PDF being imported. Tap Maps (icon) - Switch Maps - Offline. The PDF should be there. If not tap the refresh icon. You may need to drag the gps location to the map location to see it. Oruxmaps and GeoPDFs are discussed in other posts on this forum.
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