QGIS has many powerful tools for manipulating data. Virtual Layers are a way of generating new dynamic layers that are the result of using spatial SQL on existing layers. Virtual Layers do not need a spatial database like PostGIS or SpatiaLite, but can be used on any layer, including shapefiles or geojson.
In this exercise, we will query the NationalMap to get a CSV of all the 1 arc-second DEM tiles for the entire United States, and then turn it into an index map. These tiles are 1-degree squares, and there are nearly 3400 of them.
I’ll demo this in the workshop, but the CSV has already been downloaded for you. But this same technique could be used to make index maps of other National Map datasets.
Start a new QGIS project and add the /exercise4/ned3397_20200201_195900.csv file
Rename the layer to ‘csv’ (to make for simpler SQL below)
If you open the attribute table, you’ll see how the min/max x/y values are all jammed into a single field. This is not ideal, but we can extract each value using text-parsing functions in the SQL of QGIS Virtual Layers!
Open the Data Source Manager > Virtual Layer
Enter the following query:
-- first we extract all the coordinates out of the boundingBox field with bbox as ( select *, regexp_substr("boundingBox", 'minX:(-?\d+(\.\d+)?)') as minX, regexp_substr("boundingBox", 'minY:(-?\d+(\.\d+)?)') as minY, regexp_substr("boundingBox", 'maxX:(-?\d+(\.\d+)?)') as maxX, regexp_substr("boundingBox", 'maxY:(-?\d+(\.\d+)?)') as maxY from csv ) -- then we assemble the attribute table and polygon geometry select title, regexp_substr( "title", '(n\d+[ew]\d+)') as label, 'true' as available, downloadUrl AS downloadUrl, metaUrl AS websiteUrl, (prettyFileSize || ' - updated ' || publicationDate) as note, prettyFileSize AS size, lastUpdated AS updated, st_envelope( geom_from_wkt('LINESTRING('||minX||' '||minY||', '||maxX||' '||maxY||')') ) as geometry from bbox where downloadUrl not like '%rockyftp%'
Note 1: “downloadURL AS downloadUrl” is necessary to get the capitalization correct for OpenIndexMaps. Note 2: We omit records for the old “rockyftp” server, which are for old duplicate tiles.
Click “Add”, then “Close”