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Geochecking

One way to audit a list of locality names and their latitudes and longitudes is to build a KML file with the data and then check the data by eye in Google Earth or another spatial browser. The KML-building is very quick: it can be done in one step with AWK, as shown below.

The raw material for the AWK command is a tab-separated table without a header line containing 3 fields: locality name, latitude in decimal degrees and longitude in decimal degrees, like this:

$ cat file
Didos Hill    -42.0792    148.0665
Old Coach Road    -41.8874    148.0446
Hop Pole Creek    -41.8482    148.0173
Hop Pole Creek    -41.8470    148.0172
'Royslea' property    -41.8391    147.8716
Snow Creek    -41.8454    147.8464
St Pauls River    -41.8112    147.8060
Grange Road    -42.0488    148.0594
Boathouse Gully    -42.0509    148.0860
Didos Hill    -42.0837    148.0681

Use AWK to build the top and bottom of the KML file and to process each line of file as a placemark, using the locality name field as the name element (label) for each point. The AWK command is shown below as an image, but you can download it as text here.

AWK

The resulting file temp.kml in a text editor:

KML

When temp.kml is opened in Google Earth, each point can be checked for plausibility:

check

The marker icon used here is one of the Google Earth standards and is easily replaced with another Google Earth icon or your own marker image.

As an alternative to labelling the markers with locality name, you can put the locality name string in a pop-up balloon by replacing the name markup in the XML with description. To avoid having Google Earth insert the text 'Directions' into the balloon, add this to the Style section:

<BalloonStyle><text>$[description]</text></BalloonStyle>


balloon