Posts Tagged ‘geoweb’

First Look at Natural Earth Vector

Friday, June 12th, 2009

Tom Patterson and I collaborated on the precursor to his first Natural Earth Raster project several years ago and we now preview Natural Earth Raster + Vector, a new free product due Fall 2009 that complements and expands on the previous work by providing detailed GIS linework at the 1:15,000,000 (1:15 million) scale and new versions of the raster product (including cross-blended hyspometric tints). The Washington Post, where I work, is contributing 2 more vector GIS base maps at the 1:50m and 1:110m scales and new versions of Natural Earth Raster will be released for those scales. This is a NACIS and mapgiving co-branded product with assistance from the University of Wisconson-Madison cartography lab, Florida State University, and others.

Please attend the October NACIS 2009 map conference in Sacramento, California for the unveiling.

More description and preview images after the jump.

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ArcGIS Online Services—The Foundation of Web GIS (ESRI)

Thursday, November 13th, 2008

[Editor's note: 1 of 2 articles of note from the Fall 2008 ESRI ArcNews magazine. This about new ArcGIS online services, eg personal "Google maps" style mashups, and pricing.]

Republished from ESRI ArcNews.

Highlights

  • ArcGIS Online premium services are now available.
  • Leverage ArcGIS Online services and ArcGIS APIs in mashups.
  • Use ArcGIS Online content locally via ArcGIS Data Appliance and DataDoors for ArcGIS.

In the past few years, the Web has greatly facilitated the dissemination and sharing of GIS capabilities, leading to the new term Web GIS. This reflects the growing use of the Web as a platform that supports authoring geoprocessing models and maps, then publishing them as services that can be easily consumed by a variety of client applications. Ad hoc consumption of multiple data sources and distributed services makes it easier to find and use geographic information, as well as share it with other GIS professionals, customers, constituents, and the public.

click to enlarge Users can add their own GIS layers to Virtual Earth basemaps.

As an emerging dominant platform for both social and business-driven interaction, Web GIS merges (or mashes up) authoritative content with user-generated content to deliver location-based information and applications to a broader audience. Consumers can view a map showing the locations of gas stations with the lowest prices or analyze the impact a wildfire might have on their home and property. Emergency response officials can use that same wildfire map and add their own data on top of it to analyze how to plan and respond to a worst-case scenario, including routing personnel and equipment and devising evacuation routes for the populations at risk. Local governments can now provide information to their constituents in a more timely and cost-effective manner via the Web, allowing them, for example, to browse homeownership information or parcel records online or inform residents about upcoming street maintenance projects that will impact neighborhood traffic. Common to all these examples is the need for ready-to-use, current, and accurate basemap data that sometimes has to be available on short notice and onto which proprietary data can be easily overlaid, or mashed up, in order to provide information in a useful and meaningful context.

ArcGIS Online Services, powered by ArcGIS Server, can be crawled, indexed, searched, and used to share information and provide analytic capabilities to a broader audience over the Web or a network in the most effective manner. Developers who want to serve live, dynamic mapping applications over the Web can easily implement ArcGIS Online. For example, a viewer application, such as the one featured in the ArcGIS Online Services Resource Center (resources.esri.com/arcgisonlineservices) can be built quickly using the ArcGIS APIs for JavaScript. Users can also add additional content, such as photos or video and sound files.

In-depth description of the online map services, resolutions, coverage and podcasts on the next page…

click to enlarge

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Newsflash! ESRI to best Google Maps with Mashup Capability

Monday, May 12th, 2008

(Reprinted from flex888.com. View original post.)

Finally, GeoWeb is Complete and Born

Posted by Moxie | March 19, 2008 .

What’s is the best RIA application ever created? If your answer is something aroundFlex or Flash, then it’ll be wrong answer. The right answer is Google Map. It’s Google Map makes AJAX known and RIA a reality. Google even goes above and beyond claimed the term “GeoWeb“. However, up till now, Google Map is still just the best client, the visualization end, of GeoWeb. The “Geo” part of GeoWeb was missing.

Yesterday, ESRI, the shy, but true and real “Geo” dude behind all, I mean ALL, the web map buzz and technologies, released its very own JavaScript API and REST based Geo Process services to the world. The GeoWeb is finally complete and born.

The JavaScript API has three parts, the ESRI JavaScript API, the Google Map extension, the Virtual Earth extension. That means you can use the top three GeoWeb clients with this simple API to do the real “Geo” things.

What is the “Geo” things and why it’s a big deal to GeoWeb?

Well, everyone and his/her grandma knows what Google Map does, plans the trip and shows locations. What’s the most mashed up platform? Google Map. What 99% Google Map mashup applications do? Put pins (markers) on the map? But what if we want to ask some questions beyond the pushpins:

  • Within 5 minutes driving time, show me the areas that I can reach. Don’t fool me with a circle. That is cheating. Because there might be highway, service street, or river among the 5 minutes driving range. The area you can cover by driving is a irregular polygon. But how do you get that polygon drawn on the map to show the 5 minute driving range?
  • Three of my friends want to meet for lunch. We want to meet at a Starbucks where everybody has the least driving time to get there. Fair enough? But how do you quickly give me that Starbucks location and provide driving direction for each of us.

The questions can go on and on. How these questions are answered? Through a thing called Geoprocessing, which is provided by the technology called GIS (geographic information system). But why you’ve never heard of it and it’s not well known in the Web 2.0 space? That’s because it’s a very hard nut to crack and only a few dudes know how to do it inside out. ESRI is the one does it the best, and now, it gets everything figured it out. The whole web can have it.

If I tell you, with three lines of JavaScript codes, plus some regular JavaScript programming you can easily answer the above question visually on either ESRI map, Google Map or Earth Map. Do you believe me?

You don’t have to because I’ll show you how.

First Line:

    var map = new esri.Map(“mapDiv”, { extent: startExtent });

Looks familiar, isn’t it. Indeed, it’s just like Google Map or Virtual Earth API.

Second Line:

    var streetMap = new esri.layers.ArcGISTiledMapServiceLayer
(“http://server.arcgisonline.com/ArcGIS/rest/services/
ESRI_StreetMap_World_2D/MapServer”);

Something new here. Well, if you head to ArcGIS Online, a free gwoweb resource from ESRI, you would find out there are lots of good free base maps you can choose. Or, you can use any map published to a ArcGIS Server. It’s long story here for those map publishing goodies, I’ll tell you later, piece by piece. But just you know this line of code gives you a whole big world of maps to works with. Just remembering that is enough for now.

Third Line:

var gp = new esri.tasks.Geoprocessor
(“http://sampleserver1.arcgisonline.com/ArcGIS/rest/services/
Network/ESRI_DriveTime_US/ GPServer/CreateDriveTimePolygons”);

This is “Geo” part of the GeoWeb. One line, it consumes a geoprocess, in this case, a services called CreateDriveTimePolygons. This geoprocess called is actually via REST API (as the URL reveals) . The returned result can be in JSON, KML or XML. That means you really don’t have to use this JavaScript API. As matter of fact, I do have Perl or PHPexamples consume the very same gepprocess, but that’ll be another post.

The rest code is really just parse the result and draw the polygon on the map. If you know Google Map API, there are no surprises there.

The following is the true GeoWeb application I’ve introduced to you. You can zoom in to any city just like you would do with gmap (scrolling mouse, drag the map, etc.). Then click the map. The 1, 3 and 5 minutes driving time polygon will be shown.

Click Here to Run the Application (view source for detail code).

I will post another example to solve that other problem using Flex. Stay tuned.