Dave McIlhagga is serving as the ambassador of the MapServer community at this event. In speaking to the Autodesk community he noted that while many had never heard of Frank Warmerdam, Steve Lime and Daniel Morrissette, they had heard of Linus Torvald. MapServer he noted has about to make those names and others as legendary as Torvald’s. Why? Because MapServer, like Linux was going mainstream.
He noted that the MapServer and MapGuide communities are similar. Both have tens of thousand of users. Both try to solve problems using maps.
He gave a brief history of MapServer, which began as Steve Lime’s (yet unfinished he believes) Master’s thesis. He noted his company (DM Solutions Group’s) challenges serving its customers with commercial software, noting that even when he and colleagues could point to the specific line of code that was “broken” it took vendors months to respond. That lead DM to MapServer and a series of contributions to it including documentation, a scripting language and Windows support. User numbers jumped from 100 in 2001 to perhaps 20,000-40,000 today.
He’s optimistic about the Foundation pointing out that the biggest discussion to date was about the name MapServer Cheetah. That he noted was a good sign. He also pointed out that while geotechnology has been trying to merge into information technology, to date it’s not made huge inroads. Perhaps, he says, the creation of the Foundation and Autodesk’s support will really extend geo into IT.
In discussing how the foundation will change the GIS landscape, McIlhagga points to the operating systems landscape. “When Linux came along, it had little impact on Microsoft, but on the small players.” Perhaps that will be true in GIS as well?
by Adena Schutzberg on 11/29 at 10:08 AM |
“It’s good to be out of the closet.”
Autodesk’s Gary Lang on being able to share the story of MapServer Enterprise
Q: “What are you doing next?”[after MapServer Enterpise]
A: “Selling it to you!”
Q: “I thought it was free!”
Jonathan Mark, GIS Manager and MapGuide User, City of Vancouver joking around after MapServer Enterprise Demo
“AJAX is a complex development environment.”
Autodesk staffer on why MapServer Studio is a necessity
“Under LPGL commercial products developed must be compatible with the open source version.”
DM Solutions Dave McIlhagga explaining why many people may buy MapServer Studio and use it with open source MapServer Enterprise
by Adena Schutzberg on 11/29 at 10:03 AM |
We’ve commented on Maps24 before, a product of Mapsolute GmbH. This web mapping portal is worth a second look if only to see how they’ve implemented Java. Some unique features:
- Quick Zoom - Zoom out then quickly back in to original zoom level
- Route Flight - driving directions can be plotted on map and then animated to show mileage remaining
- Driving directions can be altered if the user stipulates a POI. For example, if you want to make certain that your route takes you by banks, then the route can be filtered as such or any number of other POIs.
- 3D view nicely orients the viewer but there is no terrain data; much like what you see in an in-vehicle nav system by TomTom
The international maps of the Middle East and Europe are done well. NAVTEQ is the data supplier.
by Joe Francica on 11/28 at 08:00 AM |
Check out my article at Directions Magazine with details on the foundation, Autodesk’s participation, and the key players’ take on the future.
by Adena Schutzberg on 11/28 at 06:30 AM |
The Chicago Sun Times writes about Xora, a company that uses “geofences” to track when employees or family members cross invisible boundaries. This is not news to the geocommunity, what is is the response to the widespead use of the term geofencing. He and a colleague coined the term “geoslavery” in 2003 (and wrote about it in Directions recently). Says Dobson:
“Some people said I was being alarmist,” Dobson said. “It occurs to me now, if I had gone one notch less, I probably would have come up with ‘geofencing’ and considered that a horrifying term. Now, that’s accepted as common terminology by the people who advertise it.”
Says William Herbert, a New York labor attorney who has studied the so-called “human tracking” issue:
... human-tracking and geofence technology are “mandatory subjects of bargaining” for labor unions. But he laments that human-tracking has not attracted the sort of debate that other controversial new technologies, like bio-technology, have gotten.
by Adena Schutzberg on 11/28 at 06:00 AM |