Thursday, November 3, 2011

pyshp - the big update

Over at, there is an interesting blog post here that talks about .shx files as they relate to the whole shapefile make up (shp,dbf,shx,etc..) and why they are important or unimportant.  pyshp now supports the creation of .shx files to provide the complete shapefile spec. 

I think that is great, and I'm glad the community has taken to the open shapefile specification so well, but I think it's time we all move onto the file geodatabase.  You can find the API here.  As of right now, there is no python module to handle the file geodatabase spec, but I'm sure one will float up soon.


Joel Lawhead, PMP said...


Thanks for the mention and the pointer to the gdb API. Pyshp has always supported shx files. I just did a quick post to show how to regenerate them if they are corrupt or missing.

We are an ESRI shop and welcome the various gdb incarnations. And I agree shapefiles are stubbornly persistent and past their prime. BUT not everything is a database problem and at a whopping ~20MB the ESRI gdb libs aren't exactly lightweight. Simpler data formats like geojson and shapefiles will continue to play a big role especially as data moves around the web more and more.

Andrew said...

Thanks for the comment Joel.

I think FGDB feature classes can replace shapefiles/geoJSON with the use of layer and map packages.

Just a thought.