While we mentioned several times the WMTS OGC standard and its brother the TMS protocol, we never mentioned TileServer-PHP, an open source Web Map Tiling Server.
From the github readme: "This server distributes maps to desktop, web, and mobile applications from a standard Apache+PHP web hosting. It is a free and open-source project implementing OGC WMTS standard for pre-rendered map tiles made with MapTiler Cluster, MapTiler, GDAL2Tiles, or available as MBTiles files. It is the easiest and cheapest way how to serve zoomable maps in a standardized way - practically from any ordinary web hosting. It is easy to install - just copy the project files to a PHP-enabled directory along with your map data containing metadata.json file. It comes with an online interface showing the list of the maps and step-by-step guides for desktop GIS software [...]"
Also important, supported protocols are:
Catching up the August geonews, we're now all up to date with this way too long entry.
On the open source front:
On the Esri front:
Discussed over Slashdot:
In the miscellaneous category:
In the maps category:
Still catching up geonews, this is a major one, the mature open source geospatial database PostGIS 2.1.0 has been released.
In short, "This release contains a ton of speed improvements, function additions , and super sexy new features. It has been over a year in the making. New functions itemized here". The highlights:
Still catching up, here's the recent Google-related geonews for the month.
From official sources:
From other sources:
While we mentioned the Fiona a few times since 2011, with the recent 1.0 release, here's more about it. Fiona is an open source OGR API for Python.
From the official page: "Fiona provides uncomplicated Python interfaces to functions in OGR, the best open source C/C++ library for reading and writing geographic vector data.
Fiona is designed to be simple and dependable. It focuses on reading and writing data in standard Python IO style, and relies upon familiar Python types and protocols such as files, dictionaries, mappings, and iterators instead of classes specific to OGR. Fiona can read and write real-world data using multi-layered GIS formats and zipped virtual file systems and integrates readily with other Python GIS packages such as pyproj, Rtree, and Shapely."
In the 1.0 announcement, Sean summarize what it offers:
And yes, Fiona is already updated to version 1.0.1.
This story happened during our holiday break earlier this month, but is still interesting to show to which extent we can be geographically tracked without our knowledge. The Slashdot story went this way: Londoners Tracked By Advertising Firm's Trash Cans.
Their summary: "Hundreds of thousands of pedestrians walking past 12 locations unknowingly had the unique MAC address of their smartphones recorded by Renew London. Data including the "movement, type, direction, and speed of unique devices" was recorded from smartphones that had their Wi-Fi on. First reported by Quartz, the data gathering appears to be a Minority Report-esque proof-of-concept project, demonstrating the possibility for targeted personal advertising. 'It provides an unparalleled insight into the past behavior of unique devices — entry/exit points, dwell times, places of work, places of interest, and affinity to other devices — and should provide a compelling reach data base for predictive analytics (likely places to eat, drink, personal habits etc.),' reads a blog post on the company's site. In tests running between 21-24 May and 2-9 June, over 4 million events were captured, with over 530,000 unique devices captured. Further testing is taking place at sites including Liverpool Street Station." (The name sounds a bit like a government project, but Renew London is actually an advertising / marketing firm.)
Quickly enough, the followup story was London Bans Recycling Bins That Track Phones.
Catching up the geonews for the month in my absence, this topic is an important one since it tries to provide a modern alternative to the Shapefile format, the GeoPackage standard is aiming to be "super lean, accessible to all, and implementable by non-GIS experts". The GML standard failed to being widely adopted and GeoPackage is coming to the rescue. We discussed GeoPackage before, and here's the latest and important news about it.
First, on August 6th, the OGC GeoPackage draft standard for sharing spatial data was released for public comment until September 5th. Chris Holmes shared a pretty pertinent entry named Githubbing the GeoPackage specification and he is pretty positive: "I do believe the specification is ‘pretty good’ – it has improved in almost all the ways I was hoping it would [...]. I do believe GeoPackage can improve even more, primarily by feedback from real implementations."
A few days later, Chris shared another insightful entry on Spatialite and GeoPackage: "One of the most important things for me was that it would be possible for implementors to build code to create a geopackage without requiring any special SQLite stuff. The core should just be a file format. And the file should be readable by any SQLite, not one compiled with special options or additional libraries. This means the core GeoPackage is far less than SpatiaLite. [...] Unfortunately SpatiaLite made some small changes so that as a Java programmer I can’t just use JTS‘s Well Known Binary parser, and it’s a similar story in OGR. And it’s the same case for any GIS vendor that has a WKB parser." Read the entry for more details on the differences and why it has / may have to be different.
And yes, there already is an open source libgpkg in the works!
With the launch of their Android version, I became aware of CyberTracker, a free "GPS Field Data Collection System that turns your smartphone into a sophisticated tracking and monitoring device". It's a non-profit organization and they mention free software several times, but not certain that is open source software, anyone knows?
From the website: "You can use CyberTracker on a Smartphone or handheld computer to record any type of observation. CyberTracker, which requires no programming skills, allows you to customize an Application for your own data collection needs. [...] CyberTracker is the most efficient way to gather large quantities of geo-referenced data for field observations at a speed and level of detail not possible before. Observations can be entered with a simple Radio List or a Check List. Number and text fields can also be entered by means of conventional key pads or keyboards."
After a nice Summer break, we're back. Expect the catching up of geonews aggregation to occur over the next 2 weeks or so.
You can now submit content - stories (geonews), press releases and comments. Cheers -- Alex for Slashgeo
A batch mode edition while on holidays. Next one will be late August since I'll be away from computers (and even without electricity!) for a few weeks.
From the open source / open data front:
From the Esri front:
From the Google front:
A big bunch of geospatial-related news discussed over Slashdot:
In the everything-else category:
In the maps category: