[OSGeo-Discuss] CommonMap in Canada

Bob Basques Bob.Basques at ci.stpaul.mn.us
Mon Mar 14 07:43:34 PDT 2011


Have you figured out how other entities (like countries or ??) might implement a similar service node that could interact with your framework design? 


>>> Brendan Morley <morb.gis at beagle.com.au> wrote:

Hi all,

I just wanted to let you know that the CommonMap initiative is still alive, as am I.

To recap, CommonMap will be a collaboration and repository of liberally-licensed geodata (without share-alike) - accessible though an OpenStreetMap-style interface.  We will accept Creative Commons Attribution, CC0 and public domain geodata contributions, depending on your jurisdiction.  We expect it will find fresh acceptance in the "Gov 2.0" movement, since it allows governments to redistribute contributions from the community.  We also are quite happy to accept OpenStreetMap contributors who find themselves dissatisfied with its default licence.

We want to focus on a particular country at first, which is Canada.  Why?

     * It has quite a comprehensive open data catalogue;
     * It appears to have a compatible licence;
     * It also has a rigorous "foreign key" model, which bodes well for roundtripping back to government;
     * It's the home of Refractions Research, the custodian of PostGIS which is a good friend of mine;
     * Finally, it helps that Sam Vekemans is our enthusiastic man on the ground over there.

We want to get as much of Natural Resources Canada's GeoBase and Canvec publications into the CommonMap database as we can, and use Canada as a showcase country for what CommonMap can uniquely do.

The "proof of concept" API instance is currently at http://api.development.i386.commonmap.org/
It is hosting an overlay of:

     * Natural Earth Data;
     * Some sample Geobase National Road Network, National Hydro Network and Land Cover datasets.

(Hint: look up Victoria, British Columbia[1] for an example of all 3 datasets together.)

Next comes the challenge of ramping up to a public launch.  The core of CommonMap is a web-facing API and its "one true" database, a download site for XML full copies of that database, and a map tile server with its optimised database.  To run this at public scale will demand about 8-10 CPU cores and associated storage, or about US $10,000 per year.

Let's face it, we will require a higher rate of donations to do this. If you believe in the idea of CommonMap, a good way to show your support is to donate to CommonMap Inc.  (CommonMap Inc is the non profit body that operates the CommonMap internet resources.)

Potential donors, please head this way:

Even if you can't spare the cash, perhaps you can spare your skills or tools, whether they be in geodesy, obtaining or converting geodata imports, running up database or tile servers, or developing applications?  Let us know.

Please feel free to forward this news to whoever you wish.

I welcome all comments: You can make further enquires by return email, the commonmap.org website, or "CommonMap" at LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.  Sam Vekemans also has a group blog for CommonMap set up at Posterous.



Brendan Morley
President, CommonMap Inc.
morb_au at commonmap.info
Queensland Incorporated Association 37762
Also find us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn

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