Spatial data analysis and visualization in Excel

At work with spatial data we often encounter two types of datasets. The first is basically a long-term static and unchanged (river network, states, countries and cities borders or geological maps). These are stored in shape files and serves as fundamental documents.

The second group consists of data with time constraints of existence or dynamically changing. These data we have stored in databases or Excel files. Since MS Excel has around 1 billion users, it is de facto the standard interface also for spatial data. If you want to process and visualize them and these data are not only simple points in space, you must frequently use external large GIS tools (also for only a simple analysis).

Exactly for this reason was GIS.XL add-in created. GIS.XL is focused on spatial data processing and visualization using GIS methods directly in Excel. Add-in does not represent a complete GIS package with all the functions and features we know. Includes only the most essential and easily make them available for Excel users, such as shape file import, map layers, legends, zoom, pan and identify features, support of multiple coordinate systems and option to setup visual properties of map layers.

The basic features of GIS interface are linked with Excel functions and interface. This enables you to:

  • create new shape file from Excel table (points, lines, polygons, hexagons, buffers, Delaunay polygons, …)
  • update attribute table of shape file by Excel table
  • export shape file to Excel
  • update excel table by data from shape file
  • export Excel data and shape files to Google Earth (KML files)
  • create spatial statistical analysis and summaries in polygons

Better overview of the functionality and user interface you can make from following video.

Milos Gregor


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