Lectures based on MS Project

Following lectures are based on MS Project. These are lectures of Project Management and recommended to be taught along with use of MS Project.

Lab 1 – Getting Started with MS Project

Lecture 1 – Project Basics

Lecture 2 – Understanding Projects

Lecture 3 – Project Management Tasks

Lecture 4 – Project Quick Start

Lecture 5 – Assessing  & Managing Risk

Lecture 6 – Scheduling & Linking Project Tasks

Lecture 7 – Entering Project Tasks

There are very good Youtube tutorial on MS Project which can be helpful for more understanding.

Useful GIS/RS Datasources

Following are useful datasources for GIS/RS:

Datasources for Pakistan:

  1. Download Free Pakistan ArcGIS Shapefile Map Layers (Roads and Rail)
  2. Pakistan GIS: National & Provincial Boundaries of Pakistan

Datasources for Countries:

  1. Download by country | Global Administrative Areas
  2. Global Administrative Areas | Boundaries without limits
  3. China Global Investment Tracker Interactive Map

DEM Datasources:

  1. DEM Tutorial – A basic guide for using Digital Elevation Models with Terragen
  2. Data Basin | Datasets | 30 arc-second DEM of Asia
  4. LiDAR topography data from Open Topography


  1. Landsat dataset

Terrain Mapping Journal for the Earth and Beyond:

  1. Free Digital Elevation Model (DEM) and Free Satellite Imagery Download Links

OSGeo – Public Geospatial Data Committee:

  1. Geodata

Natural Earth:

  1. Cultural, Physical, and Raster dataset


  1. USGS/EROS Guides/dem
  2. USGS/EROS Find Data/Products and Data Available/DEMs
  3. USGS/EROS Find Data
  4. EarthExplorer
  5. Cumulus Portal for Geospatial Data

UNEP-WCMC – UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre:

  1. Datasets, Tools & Reports


  1. NASA astergdem tutorial
  2. NASA – NASA, Japan Release Most Complete Topographic Map of Earth

CGIAR – Consortium for Spatial Information:

  1. Soil Data
  2. World Elevation Data
  3. Climate Data

Google Earth Hacked Locations:

  1. Google Earth Hacks – Censored Locations
  2. Google Earth Hacks – World Nuclear Power Plants (updated 11.06.2006)
  3. Google Earth Hacks – World weather
  4. Google Earth Hacks – RealTime Disasters and Emergency Monitor
  5. Google Earth Hacks – Most dangerous road in the world
  6. Google Earth Hacks – CERN – with overlays


  1. ESRI_StreetMap_World_2D (MapServer)
  2. World_Topo_Map (MapServer)
  3. World_Terrain_Base (MapServer)
  4. Elevation/ESRI_Elevation_World (GlobeServer)
  5. Elevation/USGS_Elevation_US (GlobeServer)

Other Datasources:

  1. FreeGIS.org
  2. OpenGeoData – Home
  3. Spatial Data on the web, worldwide: Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Lab at MIT
  4. GLCF: Data & Products
  5. Free GIS Datasets
  6. Birds Occurrence Map

Debian4Engr Series: 04 Recommended Packages, Tips & Useful links

Recommended Packages:

  1. icedove, for email client, to install from root terminal:
  2. iceweasel, for browser (its same firefox but with removed copyright content i.e., mozilla logo and its brand name firefox), to install from root terminal:
  3. libreoffice, gnu/gpl office software as openoffice is now voilating opensource licenses, to install:
  4. unrar, program for extracting rar archive files, to install:
  5. opensource matlab, scilab, to install:
  6. eclipse ide with jdk, to install:

    and to install cdt (c++ development tools for eclipse):

    . To install g++ and its debugger:
  7. ffmpeg, for audio/video codec converter, to install:
  8. kdenlive, for video/audio editing, to install:
  9. qcad, for 2d engineering cad/cam. to install:


Recommended Tasks:


  1. Never experiment with production system.
  2. Never install software outside from repo or from source code.
  3. Always backup on regular basis and before experimenting with new package.
  4. Some guide, tips and solution given on different sites are outdated and doesn’t work with your current distro. Check date of upload of these guides.


Useful links:


Debian4Engr Series: 03 Recommended sources.list & apt preferences

My Debian sources.list is:

and my apt preferences file is:

I have kept lower priorities in preference for testing and unstable because they are not recommended for stable production system and may crash your system.

After setting preferences, you need to put ‘-t {repo type}’ for installation e.g.,


Reference: Apt-Pinning for Beginners

Debian4Engr Series: 02 Recommended Linux Partition

During installation of Debian Linux, you are required to enter partition scheme. The easiest way is to use entire disk and recommended partition or you can decide yourself the partition. One of helpful detail of partition is given below:

swap = 2GB
file type for rest of partition = ext4
/ = 6GB
/boot =200MB
/opt = 10GB
/srv = 3GB
/tmp = 6GB
/usr = 10GB
/usr/local = 10GB
/var = 5GB
and finally for /home = rest of space left (but atleast 10GB).
This partition is on Logical Volume Manager – LVM. You can edit each partition later using GParted Live CD.

Note: This recommended partition is for end user’s laptop and desktop. For servers, /srv partition should be big enough for running services and /var partition must also be adjusted for maintaining log files.

For More info:

You can find more information about swap size from: NixCraft or Linux.com. The details on each partition is given in NixCraft, LinuxPlanet, Debian.org and on LinuxQuestions.

For partitioning multiple disks, guide can be found on tldp.

To check existing partition, use fdisk, palimpsest and baobab – Gnome Disk Usage Analyzer.

Debian4Engr Series: 01 Before Installation

Debian is a free operating system (OS) for your computer. Debian GNU/Linux provides more than a pure OS: it comes with over 29000 packages, precompiled software bundled up in a nice format for easy installation on your machine. Read more…

01 Before Installation

  1. Debian Linux is installed on most of the desktops without any issues. If you want to install Debian Linux on laptop then check hardware support from http://linux-laptop.net/ or http://bing.com/
  2. If your laptop not found in the list then still you can try it.
  3. Run live cd mode to check keyboard layout, hardware compatibility, installed software and desktop environment.
  4. To get used to with environment of Linux and its desktop like gnome or kde, install it in virtualbox.
  5. Debian Linux is recommended for advance Linux users. It is recommended to try easy distro like Ubuntu before and have some know how on basic Linux commands and tasks.



Lectures on Project Planning & Management

Following are lectures on Project Planning & Management. These are based on Project Management Body of Knowledge – PMBOK written by Project Management Institute – PMI. PMI is the world’s leading not-for-profit membership association for the project management profession, with more than half a million members and credential holders in more than 185 countries.

PPM Course Outline

PPM Lecture 0 – Project Basics

PPM Lecture 1 – Project, Operational Work, Strategic Planning, Program, Portfolio, Sub-Project, PMO, Project Life Cycle, Project Stake Holder and Organization System

PPM Lecture 2 – Benefit to Cost Ratio

PPM Lecture 3 – Project Process, Integration, Scope, Time and Cost Management

PPM Lecture 4 – Economic Analysis of Proposed Bridge using Benefit to Cost Ratio and Internal Rate of Return

PPM Lecture 5 – Project Quality & Human Resource Management

PPM Lecture 6 – Project Communication & Risk Management

PPM Lecture 7 – Project Procurement and Closure

SCILAB Tutorials

SCILAB software is available for windows, mac and linux. It is a numerical computation tool and opensource alternative to MATLAB. It can be downloaded from http://www.scilab.org/.

Excellent tutorial on SCILAB are following:

  1. Introduction to SCILAB
  2. MATLAB-SCILAB Equivalent
  4. Matrix Structural Analysis of Plane Frames using SCILAB

The source code of above msa scilab document is available here. It can analyze 2D beam, frame and truss.

Solver based on Direct Stiffness Method

DSM-SOLVER is based on Direct Stiffness Method.  Direct Stiffness Method is implementation of Finite Element Method. It is available in two flavors. One is octave/matlab while other is scilab script and distributed under GNU/GPL v2.0 license.

GNU Octave is free clone of matlab. It is fully compatible with matlab.

Scilab is an open source, cross-platform numerical computational package and a high-level, numerically oriented programming language. Scilab is alternative to matlab.

You can download the source-code of DSM-OCTAVE-SOLVER or  DSM-SCILAB-SOLVER. To understand how this script works,  read the document provided along with the source files. Consider the following example:

scilab dsm example
Example Problem

The above example can be solved in one of the two scripts explained as under:

For Octave/Matlab example, first define some input variables as:


To run the program, you need to update the directory to src folder, then, write following:

Note that truss2d has same code as that of frame 2d. You can get pretty accurate result for trusses by considering it as frame.


For SCILAB example, the input matrices and command for making var01.bin as provided in the preproc.sce file are:

To run the program, you need to update the directory to src folder, then, write following: