[OSGeo-Discuss] Re: idea for an OSGeo project -- a new, open data format

P Kishor punk.kish at gmail.com
Wed Nov 14 06:54:34 PST 2007

On 11/14/07, Christopher Schmidt <crschmidt at crschmidt.net> wrote:
> On Wed, Nov 14, 2007 at 04:12:21AM -0600, mdragon at ciesas-golfo.edu.mx wrote:
> > I would just love to click open and see something nice, specially if
> > someone has already taken the time to make it beautiful.
> >
> > Think of it as the output of a word processor instead of an editor.
> > Excel vs. VisiCalc; and the list may go on forever.
> >
> > All this is to say: not only the data needs a better container, the maps
> > as well.
> A data format is not a 'container' for maps, it's a container for data.
> The container for your maps should be something like WMC (though I
> don't know if it makes sense off the web): grouping together datasources
> and SLD and the like. The first half of the things you identified:
> > - optional space for metadata,
> > - optional thumnails (in 2 sizes: thumb and browse)
> > - optional embeded symbols (truetype/svg glyphs) and prefered layout
> > - optional coloring and styles, break values, rendering and
> >   scale limits, persistent joins or relates, color ramp, ...
> are things which are provided by SLD and the like, which means that you
> really want SDF + WMC -- I don't think that this is SDF's job, and I
> don't think that it should be the job of any geodata format.

>From a pure data approach, I agree that "how it looks" does not belong
in "what it is." Data should be completely separate from the

There is a part of me, though, that believes that embedding some
default styling in the data container would be very useful. Apple's
Quicklook is a great technology that allows one to "quickly look" at
the data before deciding what to do with it. So, at there is some
precedence for this.

This is how it could work -- if any styling is provided from outside,
the internal styling would be ignored. However, if nothing is provided
from outside, then the default styling as determined by the creator
would be used.

Being able to click on the data package and see a preview would be fantastic.

Built in containers for metadata and SRS would be absolutely essential.

Manolo, could you please add these to the wiki page that David set up,
else I will add it but not until tomorrow or so.

> Regards,
> --
> Christopher Schmidt
> Web Developer
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Puneet Kishor
Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies
Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo)
Summer 2007 S&T Policy Fellow, The National Academies

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