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How to do GIS at home

1. Use the links at the end of these instructions to access one of two GIS packages made available for free from ESRI Inc. If you download ArcGIS Explorer you will have an executable file once the download is complete. Run this executable, and you will have a new software package on your computer.

2. Download some of the ShapeFiles that represent Volusia County data. It is important that you read all the instructions before you download.

3. Start the ArcGIS Explorer package you have installed.

4. Choose "Add Content” and add the Shapefiles you just downloaded. (Remember to unzip them first, if you have not already done so.) To add the shapefiles, just navigate to the directory you downloaded them to, highlight the file name, and click Open. You will see the name of the Shapefile in the list box on the left. If it isn’t already being displayed, all you need to do is turn on the check boxes to make them draw. ArcGIS Explorer will load the shapefile and automatically zoom to its location.

ArcGIS Online is a cloud-based, collaborative content management system for maps, apps, data, and other geographic information.

GQIS is another robust, free GIS application available for use that allows you to view and interact with Shapefiles.

Feel free to play around with either package to learn all their functions and capabilities. You won't break anything (besides, even if you do, you can always download it again). It is also suggested that you use the help system freely to learn all of the functionality built into the package.

I want ArcGIS Explorer Desktop  or I want QGIS  These are two free GIS software packages that you can download and install on your computer.

ArcGIS Online   Make maps using esri resources

 Additional information and training can be found at esri’s Virtual Campus

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