5. September 2002
GRASS Development Team
GRASS 5 Stable Release - Free Geographic Information System
Today the GRASS Development team led by Markus Neteler released the first
stable version (5.0.0) of the fifth generation of
the well known Geographic Resources Analysis Support System (GRASS).
GRASS 5 is Free Software under GNU GPL, the sources of which can be
found at ITC-irst, Italy, on http://grass.itc.it
and several mirrors along with documentation and sample data.
In addition to traditional Unix platforms such as GNU/Linux, Solaris and IRIX,
experimental versions of GRASS 5 also run under Microsoft Windows (R) using
the Cygwin tools and Apple Macintosh OS-X (R), also known as Darwin. It was
also ported to handheld devices such as Compaq/iPAQ (R) and SHARP/Zaurus
This new version is the first major change in GRASS functionality since GRASS
4 was released several years ago. Notable improvements include support
for floating point and null values. Users can opt to use a new windowing
interface based on Tcl/Tk on those platforms supporting X Window.
A successful series of beta and pre-releases of GRASS 5 over the last two
years has shown the software sufficiently stable to justify a wider audience
release in the view of developers and users alike.
"This release was long in coming, because the GRASS source code base is huge."
explains the team coordinator Markus Neteler. "In the last few years GRASS
also completely changed the development model adopting an open volunteer
driven process and fully going the Free Software way."
"This is a milestone release." reveals Professor Helena Mitasova of North
Carolina State University. "Markus Neteler has successfully coordinated many
developers to undertake this huge endeavor." Professor Mitasova views GRASS
5.0 as a unique geospatial research environment which encourages experiments
GRASS development in the last years has been supported by many people
and organisations. Apart from the organisations already mentioned thanks
from the GRASS community goes to Baylor University, USA which has long been
associated with supporting GRASS (also running a mirror site
and Intevation GmbH, Germany which hosts development resources like the
CVS respository and bugtracker.
GRASS (Geographic Resources Analysis and Support System) web sites with software