[OSGeo-Discuss] New Project.

Bob Basques Bob.Basques at ci.stpaul.mn.us
Wed Feb 28 14:29:37 PST 2007

I apologize for the previous Email.   We went to GroupWise here, and I
just got converted.  Danged if I can figure out how to do an Inline
 . . . .   Grumble, grumble . . . .
Let me know if I need to make this prettier.

****************  You can't be late until you show up. 
************  You never learn anything by doing it right. 
***  War doesn't determine who's right. War determines who's left. 

>>> "Bob Basques" <Bob.Basques at ci.stpaul.mn.us> 2/28/2007 4:06 PM >>>


****************  You can't be late until you show up. 
************  You never learn anything by doing it right. 
***  War doesn't determine who's right. War determines who's left. 

>>> Christopher Schmidt <crschmidt at crschmidt.net> 2/28/2007 2:45 PM
On Wed, Feb 28, 2007 at 02:22:37PM -0600, Bob Basques wrote:
> Moose has more of the Desktop GIS functionality and more tightly
> integrated with MapServer. For example: measure, data popups,
> design skins, move layers, legends, printing, more configuration
> options, identify, and select.  I don't think this type of
> functionality
> is the goal of OpenLayers, they strive more to make it easy to
> integrate
> multiple data sources.

Although this is not in the goal of the *core* of OpenLayers, building
the application on *top* of OpenLayers (assuming that you're searching
for a web interface)
We have our own Client (application) GUI already.   The OpenLayers
piece is related to the output form of WFS.  We wanted to add in a WFS
viewing capability and explore this process.

 is exactly what OpenLayers is targeted to. The
examples directory of OpenLayers contains an example for how to do
feature identification/query
(http://openlayers.org/dev/examples/getfeatureinfo.html), and path 
measuring is one of the tools that the new vector integration will
us to build.

Styling the OpenLayers UI and integrating it into a larger surrounding
UI is also part of the design of the project:
http://www.warwide.com/images/wwscreen/wwss_01.jpg shows, for example,
an OpenLayers interface integrated into a war game.

Moving layers is something that there is no existing UI for, but
something that I would love to see, either as an example or as an
external control. However, at the moment it is true that we're
concentrating on how to get data into the interface.
The Client we have uses a XML (MAPBOOK) format for organizing the
layers in the Client View.   This same file is used as a Catalog
mechanism for choosing which layers to actually display.

In general, OpenLayers seeks to create an API which can be used at the
base level of any browser-based GIS application. MapBuilder has
begun to use the OpenLayers API to replace their existing map
by building their tools around an OpenLayers Map created via that API.

ka-Map may do something similar in the future. 

> OpenLayers strives to have easy support for numerous data sources
> Google, Yahoo, GeoRSS, and WMS.  Then they work off of the concept
> placing point markers and soon vector (line and polygon) on top of
> those
> data sources.  The also support tiled and untiled data sources in
> same interface.  This works very nice if your don't have a lot of
> layers
> that are changing all the time and you can make use of caching.  I
> think
> an interface like this would be pretty slow and hard to manage for a
> organization like Douglas County, MN that is updating their parcels,
> plats, E911 address points and roads every week.

I'm not sure how you're going to be able to improve that -- I'd be
interested to learn more about what you feel the challenges are that
OpenLayers doesn't help you meet. 
The biggest one was how to manage 100+ data layers for viewing by the
client.  There are user controls in place for this type of thing.  
Another aspect, was easy administration for a Site Admin. Using the
MAPBOOK mechanism, it's very easy to set up a purpose built (Project
based) Web service that uses the MOOSE interface to access these many
layers (or at least whatever is in the MAPBOOK.
It's much easier to demonstrate this than describe it.  We'll have a
version showing off things available publicly in the very near future. 
In the mean time, a relatively new version is here:
There is also a set of links that show the OpenMnnd folks using the
Client here:

> A more discrete description might be that MOOSE is shooting for the
> customers that need to publish data in all sort of formats (and
> Systems), in a near Realtime fashion.  The intent is to make the
> as transparent to the Data publishers as it is to the Data users.

I'm slightly confused, now. You mention 'publish their data', which to
me, sounds like a server, rather than a client. 
The Server aspect is purely Organizational at this point.  While we've
been concentrating on using MapServer. the images can really come from
any Service.  We also normalize the data on the server such that each
owner has complete control over how their data is published and how
We don't advertise this aspect at this point.  But it's an important
piece of the Equation.

Clients consume
published data. OpenLayers is a client. Mapserver, GeoServer, 
ka-Map, TileCache, WorldWind are servers. Which is MOOSE?
MOOSE is a JAVASCRIPT based Client Data Discoverer/Organizer/Viewer.,
which when combined with the MAPBOOK (XML) data catalog (server Piece),
provides a number of capabilities related to Mapping Web Page design.
I hope to have a WIKI up this week that will describe things more
fully.  It's already built internally, just need to get the Public
Version out there.
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