Frequently asked questions

IN-CORE account

  • I want to try your IN-CORE services. Do I need to register?

    A user must have an account registered with NCSA IN-CORE service. User credentials are required in accessing repositories such as hazard, fragility, restoration, geographic and other data sets. They are also used for accessing documentation server and Jupyter Notebook files.

    The username/password you chose during registration process in IN-CORE system is called LDAP password, based on specific Lightweight Directory Access Protocol authentication. You can test your registration credentials by accessing the documentation server.


  • What’s the difference between Anaconda, conda, and Miniconda?

    The Anaconda Python distribution started out as a bundle of scientific Python packages and libraries that were otherwise difficult to install. Many packaging problems (such as compatibility of various versions) had to be solved in order to provide a cross-platform bundle, and one of the tools that came out of that work was the conda package manager. The conda Python installer is called Miniconda, a small version of Anaconda that includes only conda, Python, the packages they depend on and a small number of other useful packages, including pip.

    In a nutshell, conda is a package manager, Miniconda is the conda installer, and Anaconda is a Python distribution that also includes conda and 150+ automatically installed, open source packages and their dependencies that have been tested to work well together.

  • How do I check what version of Python and Anaconda are installed?

    The versions can be checked by running python --version and/or import sys;sys.executable in Python console.

  • I would like to use pip. I have Python 3 installed but the pip3 command does not work.

    We prefer conda installation over pip mainly because it handles Python packages dependencies and even library outside of the Python. Conda is a packaging tool and installer that handles library dependencies as well as the Python packages themselves. User can install pyIncore with pip however some of the underlying libraries have to be installed separatelly and present globally (GDAL). In any case make sure you are running the correct version of Python (you can check by running python3 --version). Following links will help you navigate through various installations; Python 3 Installation & Setup Guide, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Python!, OS specific downloads.

    Installing pyincore

  • How do I check the installed version of pyIncore?

    In your conda virtual environment type conda list and the output is a list of all installed Python packages including pyIncore.

  • Should I use virtual environment for running the pyIncore?

    We recommend using environment manager Anaconda or Miniconda; tools that help keep dependencies separate for different Python projects. If you decide to use virtual environment or manager you must do it at the beginning of the installation, in the prerequisite step. Some of the underlying libraries, however have to be present globally (e.g. gdal on Windows OS). Therefore pyIncore installation slightly differs for virtual environments and we will be happy to help you. Contact us at

    Running pyincore

  • I am getting “Module not Found” when I run pyIncore

    This can be caused by many factors. You need to make sure the module is installed for your versions of Python. Run conda list to obtain the packages installed using conda in the active environment.

  • I am trying to run building_dmg.ipynb on my computer but nothing happens.

    We assume that you are running Jupyter Notebook in your browser. Run each individual cell by clicking >|Run. The cursor (box) will highlight the next cell. The actual calculation is called in the last cell with the bldg_dmg.run_analysis() command. When successful a Comma delimited file (csv) appears in the Notebook and in the Jupyter tree under Files tab.

Creating and running analyses

  • What is a mapping and how do I create one?

    We use mapping to associate each element of a given set such as Building inventory with one or more elements of a second set of Fragility curves.

  • Is mapping related to a map?

    We use noun mapping for operation that associates each element of a given set with one or more elements of a second set. In IN-CORE and pyIncore specifically, for example a Building inventory (given set) is mapped to a (second) set of Fragility curves.

  • What is dataset_id and how do I create it?

    Each set being it a data, mapping, inventory, fragility or restoration set in IN-CORE system has assigned ID, an identifier, which uniquely identifies it for the services and pyIncore. The unique ID is assigned when the set is uploaded to the IN-CORE services. For details how to do it see technical documentation or contact us at

  • Is Geopandas (package x) part of pyIncore?

    The full set of Python packages available in pyIncore is listed in the file. The basic set of packages is as follows: fiona, folium, jsonpickle, matplotlib, networkx, numpy, owslib, pandas, plotly, pyproj, pyyaml, rasterio, requests, rtree, scipy, shapely, wntr, seaborn, pyomo. We are currently working on creating visualization package so some packages such as folium, matplotlib, plotly will be removed from future version of pyIncore core and they will be moved to pyIncore viz.

  • What is the best Image processing library for Python.

    The most common Image manipulation and processing packages are Pillow which is a continuation of the PIL (Python Imaging Library), scikit-image, a collection of algorithms for image processing, scipy which is already a dependency of pyIncore and which provides a various image processing functions that can be operated with arrays of any dimensionality.

  • My tornado analysis is returning 0 for each inventory. When I put them together in QGIS, I can see that the inventories fall within the tornado’s path.

    The dataset is probably using different projection than WGS84. QGIS converts the projections behind the scene putting the inventory and tornado paths in the same place.

  • Warning: Boto3 is not present.

    Boto3 is a package for connectivity with Amazon AWS. pyIncore does not use it however the warning comes from the package build. We beleive that certain combination of conda channels causes the warning to appear. A user can ignore the warning or additionally install boto3.