There it goes:

Landon Blake wrote:
Does anyone know if there has been work on GIS Data Models besides any organization other than ESRI? (

There it goes:

SPRING: Integrating Remote Sensing and GIS with Object-Oriented Data Modelling. G.Câmara, R.Souza, U.Freitas, J.Garrido, F. Ii. *Computers and Graphics*, vol.15(6):13-22, 1996.

Note: Ivan Lucena on page 15 is me.

However, this material is definitely written for a user of ESRI software. It is possible to extract basic principles from the material ESRI produces on data models, although this can be difficult given the amount of software specific content.


Has there been any effort by the open source community to develop GIS Data Models? (By a GIS Data Model I mean a template or set of guidelines for one or more thematic layers and the features they contain as these layers apply to a particular application. For example: Agriculture)

Just as an example, using that software above mentioned I once developed a Data Model for research in Precision Agriculture. Basically what you do is given a source of datasets in the real word, like Geological Map or Altimetry you take the class that best represent it, like "Thematic" or "Numeric" and you give it a name and symbology appropriated for your application domain. You do that previous to the data acquisition and you can use the schema you used in several different projects.

Note: The physical data storage is trick tough, by the concept of multi-representation you can have in a database one single Thematic layer represented by vector and/or raster. For Numeric layers is even tricker, it could have Vector (contour map, triangular grid, 3D points) or Raster (regular grid) for the same "Layer". How does it sounds? I never rear of any other software that does that. Have you?

I am starting work on a data model for Survey Control as part of my efforts at the SurveyOS Project and at my day job. As part of this work I would like to develop some tutorials and templates for data model design that could be used by others in the FOSS GIS arena. These data model patterns will focus on “vendor-neutral” GIS design. I hope to work on other data models as the years pass, and most of these will be survey related.

You can play if that software to get some ideas but it is not exactly the "neutral" solution you want:

I am curious if there has been work like this done before. For example, I’ll need to define some abstract data types for Feature attributes that could be “mapped” to various software platforms and/or programming languages.

Again, Not exactly. It answers you first question but not the second one.

Any thoughts?

It is certainly a cool topic. :)



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