Here's the recent geospatial open source and open data news.
New and updated software:
Other open source software-related news:
In the open data category:
Here's the recent geonews in batch mode. Some of those news seem important enough to deserve their own entries, but I dare share them in a single one. Yes, that's another unusually long post. Normal posting frequency should resume next February!
From the open source / open data front:
From the Esri front:
From the Google front:
From the Microsoft front:
In the miscellaneous category:
Slashdot discussed a few geospatial-related stories:
In the maps category:
In the coming days, I'll be at Géomatique 2011, the major geospatial event in the province of Québec. Slashgeo is a media partner of the event.
Here's the recent open source geospatial news in batch mode, which includes everything about FOSS4G 2011 on the geoblogs that we haven't mentioned yet.
On the FOSS4G 2011 Conference front:
In other news:
On the fourth day at FOSS4G 2011, the first plenary sessions involved the presentation by the national mapping agency in UK Ordnance Survey, which really exposed the challenge this kind of organisation such as making data free as much as possible, but at the same time supporting data collection, integration, delivering and proper communication with the user community. His message was in clear to all managers in public mapping agency: be brave and progressive in your way of thinking as well as try to optimize the location of the line to draw between free open data and premium paid datasets.
On the presentation session, many new projects arising from the industry were demonstrated. First, OpenLayers version 2.11 supporting new improved features for mobile technology was presented. In previous edition, OpenLayers had poor navigation and interaction in mobile phones. Since the Lausanne OpenLayers Code Sprint in 2011, touch events across the library, such as pan, zoom, draw/edition, selection and geolocation position has been developed. The library has been reduced to increase performance. The demo version can be try here : http://openlayers.org/dev/examples/mobile.html. At the same time, when the best OpenLayers developers are experiencing hard challenges in mobile development (e.g. no standard across mobile devices), it might be because that it is really a challenge for most geospatial developers.
A presentation on the status of OpenAerialMap by Schuyler Erle has exposed the need of imagery for OpenStreetMappers especially during humanitarian crisis, which users really need access to imagery to do their work properly. The example of Haiti is one of the best one and when images were donated to the Humanitarian OSM, it really serves the need of supporting emergency responders. Mapserver and Tilecache have been used by Chrisopher Smith to give imagery access to organisations in the field. Schuyler also exposes the architecture of the OAM in 3 main server components : 1) a central index servers for metadata cataloging imagery, 2) an images server to store the raw imagery data as archives and 3) a web server to publish tiles for mappers around the world in a GIS cloud computing type of environment. What’s now? The project is having problems finding volunteers to contributes, as well as corporate support and the lack of partnership with source imagery is lacking. As this project is valuable as OpenStreetMap, but as an infrastructure driven project, the OAM needs contributions from potential users, imagery providers, public organisation and university. Who is interested?
While the presentation was on its first day in Denver, Peter Batty starts by exposing the overall success of the 2011 edition (and the slow Wifi network at the conference Hotel...) as well as the force of the open source community. In his opening ceremony, he has compiled the registration and the FOSS4G 2011 had more than 900 attendees with almost half of the crowd from the USA, around 150 Europeans and Japan as the only Asian country represented.
Secondly, Arnulf Christl presents, by showing OSGeo/FOSS4G geek T-shirt, the diversity of OSGeo around the world. Thirdly, Paul Ramsey, with his unique sense of humour, speaks about the Open source business model in his own language as it can be defines by each corporation and organisation that is working in FOSS4G as long as it keeps code alive.
Afterward, technical and academic session were exposing what’s hot in terms of geospatial open source software. Presentations on Map tiling and the new trend as managing map tiles in a database such SQLite with MapProxy. At the same time, the Apache module called geocache, renamed MapCache, was presenting its benchmark as well as its integration in the MapServer stack. In the Geonetwork presentation, the newest 2.8 geodata catalog release now separates the client and server product, the interface of metadata editor has been improved and a tool to add shapefile on-the-fly as a layer has been developed. With a strong presence of ESRI a the FOSS4G, the City and County of Denver showed that using OpenLayers in combination with ArcGIS Server is quite effective and how their contribution to the AgsjsAdapter.js to support the ArcGIS tiles version 10 was beneficial.
A discussion on the WFS-Transactional versus the REST/geoJson has been helpful to understand the performance implementation of this OGC standard with GeoServer/MapFish and to raise issue on the gml format as a WFS lack of documentation and fully compliant readers in the market.
This open source collaboration project with partners organisation, such as Quebec National Public Health Institute, has been helpful to first responders and emergency manager to actually open the used of geodata in real life-saving situation.
While the FOSS4G 2011 just began Monday, it looks that the number of attendees for the overall conference would beat the best ever in Spain last year. The first two days of the Conference started with one of the moment always appreciated by the community: the workshops. This year in USA around half of the audience of the workshops were newbies in geospatial open source community (mainly from the Colorado area) and the other half were developers, users and experts of the FOSS world.
I have attend two workshops on Monday, the first one was: Introduction to the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team. This organisation has been involved manly since the Earthquake in Haiti by sharing mapping resources with the affected people when needed. I found particularly interesting at the workshop is the “Walking papers” application. This idea is a way to “round trip” map data through paper, to make it easier to perform the kinds of eyes-on-the-street edits that OSM needs now the most, as well as distributing the load by making it possible for legible, easy notes to be shared and turned into real geographical data.
Walking Papers is a website and a service designed to close this final loop by providing OpenStreetMap print maps that can be marked up with a pen, scanned back into the computer with a cellphone, georeferenced automatically by the service and traced using OSM’s regular web-based editor, such as Potlatch or JOSM.
The second workshop I went to on Monday was: FOSS4G routing with pgRouting tools, OpenStreetMap road data and GeoExt. This workshops has been given in previous edition, but this time in Denver new improvement have been made. One of the topics discussed in the workshops was that pgRouting functions is an effective way to trace in one or two seconds a shortest path based on more than 500000 features by using the wrapper with bounding box. Even if pgRouting was quite effective for the OpenStreetMap data of Denver during the workshop, it does not mean that all parts of the world are well covered with topological streetsline. The osm2pgrouting is a great tool to prepare OSM datasets to routing and show if the datasets needs be cleaned and snapped. At the same time, Daniel Kastl from Georepublic, as one of the trainer at the workshops, said that pgRouting was made first for geospatial analysis and will never be as effective as the one implement in Google Maps, because the Google routing engine is precalculated and can be effective for entire continent. This pgRouting has not published a new releases since 2010 and any developer involvement or corporate supports is welcome. The entire workshops can be found at this address: http://workshop.pgrouting.org/.
I have made a pause and I went to see the Monday Night football at the Mile High Stadium in Denver were fans were predominantly in orange jerseys to support their home Team! It was great game, in a very nice Stadium that has quite a lovely view of the City by night.
On Tuesday, An Introduction to Geospatial Open Source was the last workshops have been to before the formal presentation part of the conference starting on Wednesday. This workshops is given an overall tour of FOSS4G world and its business model and main open source projects.
The upcoming week is looking to be very interesting for the industry of geospatial in the USA as well as the "open source / open data" world. As lucky as I am, I will be the on-site Slashgeo editor representative (Slashgeo is also the media partner for both Conferences) in both events in Denver, Colorado: State of the Map 2011 (Annual conference about the progress of OpenStreetMap and free geo-data in general) and FOSS4G 2011 (global conference focused on Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial, organized by OSGeo).
State of the Map 2011 is almost sold out in terms of registration and as the first FOSS4G in the USA, it might be the biggest FOSS4G conference ever in terms of number of attendees. Denver will be THE place to be for sharing new ideas on a Free and Open world which sharing geospatial information and tools is needed from everyone, everywhere and everyday.
First, my planning at the State of the Map weekend event is to look at what is next for OpenStreetMap in terms of quality, real applications, its role when dealing with major disaster event, ESRI/Microsoft contribution to OSM, crowd sourcing with OSM for public organisation such as USGS, etc.
Secondly, the FOSS4G 2011 might be a good gathering for social networking in the open source high tech world, but also to see the new trends coming from the industry, such as WPS, cloud map and tiling services. My planning for the FOSS4G is to attend presentation or workshop related to: geocache, WFS Transactional, WPS project, GIS in the Cloud, mobile applications, PgRouting, PostGIS, Open Data with Open Source, Web Mapping Performance, etc. I will keep you posted with some quick impression and nice pictures of the main geospatial open source and open data social and technical events. Denver is looking open, global and free for the entire week!
Nicolas Gignac, on-site Slashgeo editor representative at the FOSS4G and State of the Map 2011
Still in catch up mode, here's the last three weeks of geospatial open source news in batch mode.
Here's the recent geonews in batch mode. Yes, on a Saturday! I'll be away for the next three weeks and dare delay my family's departure to feed you with these.
From the open source front:
From the Esri front:
From the Google front:
On the Microsoft front:
In the miscellaneous category:
In the maps category:
Top 10 Reasons to Attend FOSS4G 2011 in Denver
The Event Presents Great Value and Rare Opportunity
DENVER, July 27, 2011 -- The Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial (FOSS4G) conference is the premier international conference focused on open source geospatial software. The event presents a number of unique learning opportunities at a great value compared to similar professional conferences.
Following are the Top 10 reasons to consider attendance at this event.
If you still aren't convinced, you can watch this video http://vimeo.com/osgeo/foss4g2011 from the local committee with a personal appeal, and insistence, that you come to FOSS4G in Denver.
FOSS4G is the global conference focused on Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial that is organized by the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo) with support from an all-volunteer organizing committee and professional conference management from the Geospatial Information Technology Association (GITA). The 2011 FOSS4G event in Denver marks the first North American event in four years, with the prior three events taking place in Barcelona, Sydney and Cape Town.
SOURCE: FOSS4G Organizing Committee
http://2011.foss4g.org/ FOSS4G Denver 2011
http://www.osgeo.org/ Open Source Geospatial Foundation
http://stateofthemap.org/ State of the Map Conference
http://www.gita.org/ Geospatial Information Technology Association