GDAL 1.3.0 Release

Frank Warmerdam's Geospatial Data Abstraction Library, GDAL, is a big part of the foundation of our open source GIS software stack, and the 1.3.0 release is now available for download.

This release corrects some GML parsing and spatial reference issues that I found in version 1.2.6. I'm only using a subset of GDAL's formats; there are improvements across the board. Hobu and Kevin Ruland have revised the GDAL and OGR scripting framework to make it possible to produce Java and C# bindings using SWIG. Perhaps even PHP, if SWIG support for that language improves.

Unfortunately for me, Python was the first scripting language for GDAL and its interface has a distinctly un-Pythonic feel. New language users have nothing but blue skies and can work with SWIG to make APIs with the right feel. Java users, for example, really want methods with a getFoo form rather than GetFoo for sake of consistency and clarity. This can be accomplished using SWIG's %rename directive:

%rename(getLayer) DataSource::GetLayer;

Perhaps it seems like a lot of work to some, but I guarantee that some Java user will make the time to do this. Hell, I would if I could, but there are too many legacy Python scripts out there to allow any such changes for the Python bindings. While I'm at it, I might as well wish for a pony ;)

I haven't looked at SWIG's online docs since the 1.3.23 release: when did they get so purty?