[okfn-discuss] Re: Rendering of geo locations using **open data**

Rufus Pollock rufus.pollock at okfn.org
Mon Aug 21 12:38:48 UTC 2006

Jo Walsh wrote:
> On Mon, Aug 21, 2006 at 12:52:06PM +0100, Rufus Pollock wrote:
>>>### Rendering of geo locations using **open data** ###
>>>Would like a simple software package to allow one to render location
>>>on a map with link to text. Essential that underlying map data be
>>>open. Would also like this to be deployable locally in addition to on
>>>a server. Preference would be for python or javascript type
>>I wondered whether you -- or anyone else or anyone else on list -- know 
>>of already existent tools/projects which already do this?
> I'd recommend OpenLayers as a client/UI toolkit. cf http://openlayers.org/gallery/  

wow, very nice.

> This is pure javascript. It uses Web Map Service to connect to
> different (open) geodata sources - one could use something as general
> as the VMap0 vector map of the world dataset - http://gutenkarte.org/
> illustrates this approach - OpenStreetmap also have a WMS for close-up views. 
> To get this running locally you would have to be running a WMS server
> (e.g. mapserver, http://ms.gis.umn.edu/ ) on your local machine or
> network. For python implmentations you might want to look at Sean

hmmm. that's seems a bit hard-core for the use case i had in mind here. 
That said how hard (how many dependencies are there) is it to set up a 
mapserver? Is there anything analogous sqlite for mapservers (i.e. 
something very light-weight and file-based you can drop-in as a backend 
and which supports the main apis)

> Gillies' Python Cartographic Library. There is potentially a lot of
> data involved. You might want these maps to be relatively 'static'
> after they are made?  This approach might be way processing power 
> overkill for what you need... :)

I think you're right that this might be overkill :) The use case here is 
more about something that you could integrate into a locally deployable 
open knowledge package where you need fairly simple (static) maps *plus* 
a nice api to allow me to draw things over them. For example could 'A 
Tale of Two Cities'[^1] have been rendered using a static map of Europe?

I guess what this is suggesting is i'd like:

   * a simple mapserver (sqlite for mapservers!), that i can ship with:
   * a simple set of maps (how much coverage at what resolution could I 
get for 500k, 1MB, 5MB -- what happens if i can store vectors and render 
the image at installation time?)
   * plus a simple api to render on the maps (i guess this might come 
for free with the mapserver)



[^1]: http://gutenkarte.org/map/98

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