Sunday, 19 May 2013

A tale of two cities: web maps new and old

Last I posted on vector online GIS, and that appears to be gaining traction. Mapbox offers through TileMill and OpenStreetMaps editing. These are new an emerging technologies that are exciting, and it contrasts with Esri who offers a slew of tools on the desktop and in arcgis.com. WMS is for example still immature on giscloud.com (though it is OGC compliant now), as are the symbology and labels. They do not offer model builder like Esri or Qgis (thru Sextante). But they do offer a service to process GIS functions online and allow to load data direct from web source, avoiding costly down- & up-loads. Here I compare how I used a 180K vector dataset from NOAA NGDC described previously.



This is very much a work in progress, stay tuned for Arcgis Online for example. Also Google Fusion Tables I used elsewhere are not appropriate in this context. And of course there are many many more platforms bird-dogged for example by the blog roll below to the right. Here is, however, what GSHHG maps looks like in giscloud.com and ArcGIS for Home Use that offer modest barriers to entry:
  1. giscloud.com online
  2. screenshot in ArcGIS desktop
  3. rendered as WMS in arcgis.com


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