[Mapbender-users] FOSS GIS Web Service Client-Side products: MapBender

John Roberts johnemyr at yahoo.co.uk
Mon Feb 19 17:52:14 EST 2007

Dear All

I am currently studying for a Master's degree in GIS with UNIGIS. I am
currently doing my dissertation which evaluates the main FOSS GIS web
service products, both server-side (GeoServer, MapServer, Deegree Web
Services & MapGuide OpenSource) and client-side (Deegree IGeoPortal,
MapBender, MapBuilder & OpenLayers).

I would like to compare and contrast the four client-side products using the
OWS specifications. I have taken the main part of my dissertation and
created a document which:

1. summarises the OWS specifications (chapters 1 to 4).
2. summarises the organisational structure and functionality of the four
client-side products (chapter 5).
3. creates a matrix based on the OWS specifications against which each
product is measured as to whether it is able to generate the OWS request and
parameter and whether it is able to receive and process the OWS response
(chapter 6).

I have found the exercise of creating a matrix harder with regard to the
client-side software as opposed to the server-side software. MapBender
documentation describes the controls and the functionality that they
provide. However a particular control and functionality is not related to an
OWS request and the HTTP method used (i.e. is it the MapFrame control that
generates the GetMap request and what parameters is it using?).

I think that this would be useful as it would allow a direct comparison of
server-side and client-side software compatibility. For example, if one were
to know exactly what OWS requests and parameters the MapFrame control were
generating, then the server-side software could be analysed to see if it
were able to receive this requests and generate a response and hence support
the MapFrame control.
It is perhaps that this is not the best method to approach comparing and
contrasting client-side products and if anybody has any suggestions for
alternative methods, I would be very grateful.

I have trimmed down the document for MapBender by removing the sections
pertaining to the other 3 products. I attach the document to this e-mail. I
would be grateful for any information/comments/criticisms anybody is able to
provide me with.
I have highlighted any area I am not sure of in yellow. I am mainly looking
for input in Chapters 5 & 6.
I will acknowledge anybody who provides input in the acknowledgements
section of my dissertation. If the input is straightforward functionality
then I would use the information and I would not make an explicit reference.
However, if I wanted to make an explicit reference (for example if I am
referring to a more subjective comment with regard to the relative pros and
cons of the 4 client-side products) then I would contact the person again to
ask his/her permission. I am going to post similar documents for the other 3
products on their mailing lists. Once everything is complete, I would like
to post the final document with information on all four products on the four
mailing list.

Thank you all very much in advance for any time you are able to give.

Kind Regards

John Roberts
Manchester, UK
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