Drawing/Tracing Tools for a blueprint RRS feed

  • Question

  • I've been tasked to use Geometry to store blueprint data for the building at my work and, in turn, the locations of all the objects within. I have the dimensions of the outer walls, but the inner rooms are somewhat intricate and I'm just going to have to estimate them. Are there any tools out there that I could sort of trace a blueprint with? I found a few drawing tools, but they're very basic. Is this even a feasible use of spatial data?
    Wednesday, August 10, 2011 4:06 PM


  • It's certainly feasible, although whether it's a good idea or not really depends on why you want that data to be in SQL Server. Spatial data is only really useful if you want to do spatial queries, and I'm not clear what you'd actually use the data for.

    Most GIS systems will allow you to draw freehand shapes that can be exported in a format suitable for SQL Server, such as GML or WKT. Google Sketchup is a good tool for doing interior building plans that doesn't cost too much. QGIS is an excellent opensource GIS system that allows you to create and edit vector shapes. Alternatively, for a very rough sketch, some time ago I created a little tool that allows you to draw shapes on a Bing Maps map and export to WKT, which you can find here: http://www.beginningspatial.com/marking_out_features_using_virtual_earth  (After selecting a geometry type to create, left-click to add points and right click to finish the shape). Probably not suitable for interior room plans though!

    And, here's an example of a floorplan I created as a quick demo for the SQL Bits 8 conference held at the Grand Hotel in Brighton. This was created from a PDF floorplan file using a custom script to extract the shapes in it to the equivalent WKT shapes for SQL Server.


    You can download the script to create the above image from http://pastebin.com/CpnrWFsL

    twitter: @alastaira blog: http://alastaira.wordpress.com/
    Saturday, August 13, 2011 11:07 AM