[OpenLayers-Dev] OpenLayers for Mobile devices

Benoit Quartier benoit.quartier at camptocamp.com
Thu Dec 23 07:42:36 EST 2010


On Tue, Dec 21, 2010 at 5:40 PM, Bob Basques <Bob.Basques at ci.stpaul.mn.us>wrote:

>  Benoit,
>  I couldn't get the zooming to work at all on the N900.  But I don't count
> that as a fault.
>  I understand the complexities here, especially with regard to the
> multi-touch aspects vs single touch enabled devices.  I think that in the
> near term the gesture aspects are going to NEED to be targeted at vendor
> specifics in order to take full advantage of each of them.  Hopefully this
> will flesh out to a standard from the best available, but, in the near term,
> I'm interested in seeing a process that works for single touch (Could be all
> phone/mobile devices??) as a foundational chunk of coding.  Hopefully this
> approach would get as many functional mobile devices accounted for as
> possible.  Then it makes sense to attack the vendor specific (extra)
> capabilities.  It seems to be easier to design for the masses where possible
> (from my experience), and then to enhance for the specialties, don't you
> think?
Yes, I fully agree. That's why we didn't begin with Apple gestures. But as
you wrote, in the near term, we will need to implement these vendor
specifics gestures.

It would be great to have a set of single touch events that works on all (as
much as possible) devices and, additionally, a set of vendor specific
gesture. What would they be? Double tap to zoom in, triple tap to zoom out?

>  I think there are options available for addressing these ideas, if anyone
> else is interested.
I am interested but I am not sure to understand what you mean? Could you
please elaborate?

Happy Christmas,

>  bobb
> >>> Benoit Quartier <benoit.quartier at camptocamp.com> wrote:
> Hello Jimmy,
> Thank you for your feedback.
> In the current demonstration, zooming is done by double taping while
> zooming out is done by a single two fingers tap... on iPhone (and likely
> iPad).
> Gestures are very interesting and we also did some work in this direction.
> However, the issue we have with gestures is that they are very vendor (read
> Apple) specific. Current Android phone cannot detect two fingers event in
> the browser (see (and vote!)
> http://code.google.com/p/android/issues/detail?id=11909 ). The primary
> targets of our current work are iOS _and_ Android mobile phones (@Bob: we
> didn't even test it on Nokia device, so we are happy to hear that it works).
> Of course, we would like it to run on as many devices as possible. This is
> why we didn't focus on Apple specific gesture for the moment. One of the
> goal was to answer those questions you had in your last e-mail about
> OpenLayers architecture and its ability to be used on mobile devices.
> The demo shows the working part of our job. We publish it mainly to
> (re-)start the discussion about mobile OpenLayers development. Hence we are
> happy to see interest from others!
> Things are moving on and we will definitely continue working on this topic
> next year. Let's see how we could collaborate.
> Benoît
>   On Mon, Dec 20, 2010 at 9:18 PM, Duchesne, Jimmy <JDuchesne at korem.com>
>  wrote:
>>  Thanks for your interesting answer Benoit.
>> We really appreciate you posting a demo of you work.
>> Here's what I have to say about it though. First off, your panning
>> behaviour is really good, as good as it can get actually.
>> But what about gesture zoom in, out and gesture panning (panning while two
>> fingers touch the screen)?
>> Those are the truly difficult features to implement, especially when your
>> users are experienced with native apps, and they expect to be allowed to
>> pan/zoom non-stop without any glitch.
>> I'll give you a few more information about our work so far.
>> - First of all, we developed this project for a specific client, who only
>> required an iPAD version.
>> That being said, we'll definitely adapt for other platforms in the future,
>> otherwise, we wouldn't
>> have done it with Web technologies.
>> - We have more than one layer overlaid above the base layer.
>> - By the way, that allowed us to discover a huge memory leak in Safari
>> iPAD. Basically, it looks like it never flushes loaded images.
>> The consequence is that if the user zooms in and out really often for 5 to
>> 10 minutes, Safari will crash, or tiles will stop loading.
>> Finally, on our side, we'll definitely push our implementation to the
>> limit until we have something reusable that we can use in all our projects.
>> We may publish a demo of our work soon, even though our implementation is
>> far from complete.
>> Thanks.
>> _____________________________
>> Jimmy Duchesne
>> Programmeur Analyste
>> jduchesne at korem.com
>> KOREM inc.
>> www.korem.com
>> _____________________________
>> 680, boul. Charest Est, bureau 120
>> Québec, QC G1K 3J4 Canada
>> Tél. : (418) 647-1555
>> Téléc. : (418) 647-1666
>> Sans frais : 1 888 440-1MAP
>> From: Benoit Quartier [mailto:benoit.quartier at camptocamp.com]
>> Sent: December 20, 2010 11:18 AM
>> To: Duchesne, Jimmy; openlayers-dev at lists.osgeo.org
>> Subject: Re: [OpenLayers-Dev] OpenLayers for Mobile devices
>> Hello,
>> At Camptocamp, we are also working on an adaptation of OpenLayers for the
>> mobile devices (phone and table, under iOS or Android for the moment). You
>> can check http://www.camptocamp.com/fr/blog/2010/12/mobile-web-gis/ for
>> more information (and a demonstration) about our work in this field.
>> >From this point, we are discussing internally how we can move on with
>> this development. If other people are showing an interest, it may be a good
>> time to start talking together about how we can get an efficient OpenLayers
>> mobile.
>> By the way, have you a demo available? Are you specifically targeting
>> Apple devices?
>> Regards,
>> Benoît
>> On Mon, Dec 20, 2010 at 4:29 PM, Duchesne, Jimmy <JDuchesne at korem.com>
>> wrote:
>> Hi to everyone,
>> (If you think that I should address this email to someone in particular,
>> or another mailing list, I'd be glad to know)
>> For over a year now, my team and I have been using OpenLayers thoroughly.
>> We used it as much for internal projects as we did for our clients'
>> projects.
>> Overall, we're pretty much satisfied with what you guys created. It's an
>> extensive framework that dramatically improves the speed at which we can
>> develop our applications.
>> That being said, for some months now, a new need has been brought to us by
>> both our clients and our users. We need a framework for the different mobile
>> platforms.
>> So far, we've seen some patches posted on the OpenLayers' Issue tracker
>> that added limited support for the new events that come with mobile devices:
>> touches and gestures.
>> Those patches were obviously just a start. They did show us that it was
>> possible to use those new browser events, but as they were, they weren't
>> much use.
>> Actually, we could have used them, but when you compared the behaviour
>> they had with the one mobile device's users are used to, Google Maps App or
>> http://maps.google.com,
>> it wasn't going to satisfy our clients.
>> >From that perspective, our goal was this one: To achieve map behaviour
>> comparable to what users get with Google Maps App on iPAD, but with
>> OpenLayers as the base framework,
>> and Google Maps as the base layer. At some point, the base layer shouldn't
>> actually matter though.
>> Considering the lack of time that we had for this development, and the
>> fact that we could not find any similar existing implementation, we finally
>> went for some key features:
>> - Pan the map with one finger.
>> - Double touching the map zooms around where you touched the map.
>> - Double tapping the map zooms out one zoom level.
>> - Pinching the map stretches the map in real time, with a minimal amount
>> of lag.
>> - Had to use HTML5/CSS3 there.
>> - While pinching, you can also pan.
>> - If you pan or zooms the map, and your fingers leave the screen and touch
>> it again quickly enough, you continue the current map manipulation.
>> - Map panning or stretching, while your fingers touch the screen acts on
>> all visible layers, whatever their type may be.
>> It was very important to us that while the fingers move the map or stretch
>> it, the expected result had to be visible in real-time, like it does with
>> the Google Maps App on iPAD.
>> In the end, we actually could achieve all these goals. It means that we
>> could get map behaviour comparable, or even better, to what one gets on
>> http://maps.google.com.
>> We couldn't reach all Google Maps App behaviour because of our lack of
>> time though.
>> As you may imagine, achieving these features in the amount of time that we
>> had, we actually hacked quite a lot of OpenLayers code. We'll probably take
>> some time
>> in the next few weeks to make it more portable so we can use it in all our
>> mobile device projects, but doing all this hacking made us curious.
>> What are the current plans for OpenLayers regarding the support for most
>> mobile devices? In our case, all those tablets coming on looks like a really
>> promising market.
>> Do you guys plan on actually putting any effort in supporting mobile
>> devices? Do you think that the current OpenLayers architecture can support
>> such changes, or a new dedicated framework should be developed?
>> When are you planning on using HTML5/CSS3, since it makes the overall
>> experience more pleasing to the user?
>> We're really curious to hear about what you guys think about all this.
>> _______________________________________________
>> Dev mailing list
>> Dev at lists.osgeo.org
>> http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/openlayers-dev
>> --
>> Benoît Quartier
>> Camptocamp SA
>> PSE-A, Parc Scientifique EPFL
>> CH-1015 Lausanne
>> Tel: +41 21 619 10 40
>> Fax: +41 21 619 10 00
> --
> Benoît Quartier
> Camptocamp SA
> PSE-A, Parc Scientifique EPFL
> CH-1015 Lausanne
> Tel: +41 21 619 10 40
> Fax: +41 21 619 10 00

Benoît Quartier

Camptocamp SA
PSE-A, Parc Scientifique EPFL
CH-1015 Lausanne

Tel: +41 21 619 10 40
Fax: +41 21 619 10 00
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