My reason for running this survey: I'm tired of speculating. As a multi-platform user I don't know where I stand with my clients and competitors, let alone in this sprawling industry, and I've heard lots of similar curiosity from colleagues. I call this an independent survey in that no vendor funded it (nobody funded it, actually) and it isn't for marketing use. This is a community poll, nothing more. Onward . . .
MethodsThis is worth a cursory glance, since the results are inevitably colored by the collection routine. I relied almost entirely on social media to get the word out, specifically:
- Numerous twitter solicitations to my ~500 followers, retweeted to a combined audience of over 11,000 utilizing hashtags for both the ESRI User Conference and OSCon - probably annoying the crap out of everyone in the process
- Google+ and Facebook posts
- Listserv posts to ESRI, OSGeo, OSM and Google user groups
- Posts on the three largest geospatial groups on LinkedIn
Given the warren-like distribution network, I do not know how many people saw this poll. Thus the sample size is 250 out of an unknown population, and no big-picture conclusions should be drawn. Also let it be known that the balance - even if measured properly - changes from month-to-month.
Some of the technologies that went into the "Other" column include FME, MicroStation, ENVI/IDL, GIS Cloud, AutoDesk, Maptitude, Idrisi, ERDAS, MapProxy, R-Spatial, Garmin Basecamp, Oracle XE, Ushahidi and Geocortex. Sorry to have ignored those, but it's a big ecosystem out there.
Question 2: Which of the above technologies did you use most frequently in the past year?
Platform Gregariousness: Do you cross over from your primary platform? e.g. ESRI is your main platform but you've also used Google Maps/Earth at least once in the past year. [A venn diagram would be cooler but the chart API was inscrutable]
Use by Business Sector:
Use by Country: (Click here for fullscreen glory - we're all cartographers here)
There's a lot to see in these distributions - an ESRI lean among U.S. respondents, a FOSS4G lean among Europeans. Also interesting to see how the sectors use these tools. See anything of note? Anything obviously-spurious? Do tell - I think there's a good discussion to be had here.
I'll say it again: this was not a scientific, controlled survey. It's a snapshot or an anectodal collection; take your pick. But it is nonetheless interesting to see what this group of mappers uses to get the job done. Thanks again to you all for pitching in, and maybe we'll try an expanded version next year.
If you're interested in the raw, messy results (stripped of unique identifiers of course), hit this link for an XLS download, and happy parsing!