Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Tools and approaches for the cartography of archaeological excavation sites

2010-11-05 Thread Chris Puttick
You might be better on the Open Source Archaeology list :)

http://list.iosa.it/

Speaking as a non-archaeologist working in archaeology, precision of millimetre 
is nonsense, achieved or not, as (a) the things they are recording were not 
built to that precision, nor in many built-structure cases even designed and 
(b) stuff in the ground for that long has moved...

CAD doesn't make sense, even though commonly used, as CAD (as any engineer will 
tell you) is a design tool, not a recording tool. GIS makes much more sense for 
the majority of recording as the data will require much analysis to be really 
useful, and a map can be later produced via Inkscape. We have a member of staff 
who's developed a nice survey workflow using QGIS and Inkscape.

Regards

Chris (CIO, Oxford Archaeology :) )

- Original Message -
 Hello,
 
 I have been asked to analyze how FLOSS software could help to support
 an archaeological program that would take place in remote mountainous
 corners of Central Asia.
 
 I pretty much see which sensors and software to use for the small
 scale part, where standard GPS precision is enough.
 
 But the most important part is a large scale work, where they need a
 much higher precision in order to position their findings and draw
 very precise maps of the excavation sites.
 When they work in Europe they have sensors and are in a context which
 give them a precision of the millimeter.
 For this project they know that they won't have access to the same
 tooling and they could live with a precision of the centimeter.
 
 My questions to the list therefore are:
 - is it relevant to use our usual FOSS4G software (GRASS, QGIS,
 etc.) for such tasks? or do only CAD tools make sense?
 - do some of you have experience with sensors/methodologies which
 would provide centimeter order precision, be transportable and usable
 in remote areas and not too expensive?
 - more generally, if somebody has experience with similar
 problematics, I'd be very interested in pointers to documentation,
 software, sensors...
 
 I hope that I am not (too much) out of topic: I must say that it is
 not yet completely clear to me at how large a scale do GIS stop...
 
 Thanks in advance for your comments,
 
 Mathieu
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Thoughts on how to use elevation in routing

2010-09-15 Thread Chris Puttick
Sounds to me like the kind of application that gets sold to someone in the UK, 
who are then surprised that all their deliveries start to take longer... (no 
free turns at red lights in the UK, red means stop)

- Original Message -
 Correct, but not with only right (left) turns, but with much higher
 costs for left (right) turns.
 Slightly off the topic - at the FOSS4G conference poster session I saw
 very interesting application for tourism with costs assigned according
 to how beautiful or interesting road segments are.
 
 Anton.
 
 On Wed, Sep 15, 2010 at 7:22 AM, Geoff Hay geoffrey@otago.ac.nz
 wrote:
  Hi All
  I seem to remember reading somewhere that UPS delivery routes are
  constructed with only right turns (or left depending on the country)
  so as
  to make use of 'free' turns to avoid waiting at traffic lights.
  Geoff
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Mentoring program @OSGeo[-women]

2010-09-12 Thread Chris Puttick
At terrible risk of going against the grain here, but I don't like 
discrimination, whatever its guise and whatever its motive. Call me idealistic, 
but it has been my experience that discrimination has only one outcome and that 
is discrimination. Me, I'm human; so far I've never worked or encountered a 
non-human intelligence so I cannot comment beyond humanity. But I can say I've 
worked with some great humans and some crap humans and some mediocre humans in 
a wide variety of sectors, and I observed no relationship between their 
greatness/crapness/mediocrity and their gender/sexual 
preferences/race/religion/musical tastes or even, despite my expectations, 
whether they or not they liked dogs.

Adjustments in behaviour, organisational structures, language, special 
programmes et al. to favour one identifiable group over others serves only to 
discriminate against the others. It does nothing to resolve the real issue, 
which is the mistaken belief that all members of one identifiable group are 
inherently unable or less able to do a thing, or the similarly mistaken belief 
that the behaviour of one or two people from an established community towards 
you or your identifiable group is something you can then tar that other entire 
identifiable group with. In fact such affirmative action has the opposite 
result; it fosters discrimination by continually reinforcing the idea that one 
group needs help over another opposite group and, worse, reinforces the idea 
that these broad group distinctions are real rather than artificial constructs.

It seems to me that the greatest cause of discrimination statistics is that 
idea that occurs when you see yourself as being part of an identifiable group 
and use that to guide your behaviour i.e. when you look to your groups' 
behaviours for guidance on what it is you might do with your life. Maybe my 
crazy brand of idealism is doomed to failure; maybe, for example, Baha'i 
followers will only ever engage in occupations that other Baha'i do, and Hindus 
will only ever do jobs other Hindus do. It remains however my hope (and guides 
how I act myself) that people will realise that these groupings, like most 
others, are entirely artificial when it comes to determining what you do in 
life, and that others will join me in that belief and act accordingly.

Regards

Chris

- Original Message -
 Hi all, and sorry for cross-posting,
 
 I want to share with you what I found, surfing from link to link from
 a mail sent to Systers ml.
 I stumbled first on
 http://www.linuxpromagazine.com/Online/Blogs/ROSE-Blog-Rikki-s-Open-Source-Exchange/Inequality-Choices-and-Hitting-a-Wall
 
 but I felt it was not the case of OSGeo.
 Then I found a link about the female representation in 2010 Google
 Summer of Code - very encouraging:
 http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/08/sixth-annual-summer-of-code-flexes-some.html
 
 and finally a good seed for OSGeo-women:
 http://www.linuxpromagazine.com/Online/Blogs/ROSE-Blog-Rikki-s-Open-Source-Exchange/FOSS-Mentoring-A-tribute-to-female-mentors
 
 What about a mentoring program like Debian-women's?
 http://women.debian.org/mentoring/
 
 feedback is most welcome!
 
 cheers,
 Anne
 --
 http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Anne_Ghisla
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Commercial support

2010-09-03 Thread Chris Puttick
Well, while we're mentioning specific companies... OA Digital 
(http://oadigital.net) provides assistance and support on a wide range of OSGeo 
solution components. Even support for solutions still encumbered with legacy 
stuff.

Actually a Google search in your native language or with your country of 
residence appended for open source geospatial product of interest support 
should get you a whole bunch of people who can help. And help to the level that 
only, for example, Oracle can help with Oracle stuff i.e. there is more support 
out there for open source solutions than there are for closed ones.

Regards

Chris

- Original Message -
 On Fri, 2010-09-03 at 12:08 +0200, Alvaro Anguix wrote:
  gvSIG Association
 
 
 http://www.qgis.org/en/commercial-support.html
 
 
 -- Giovanni --
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] The depth of FOSS Spatial Data Infrastructure

2010-07-31 Thread Chris Puttick
Sounds like an excellent document! Email it on and I'll have it neatly 
butchered. The web portal claim is remarkable, as are claims of limited 
analysis capabilities.

Regards

Chris

- Original Message -
 Some so called SDI experts feel that FOSS SDI cannot perform at-par
 with Proprietary SDI.
 Please provide examples to fight a case from an Indian state which
 swears by Free and Open Source Software. We can never expect a better
 level playing field.
 
 Kerala - India
 
 Here are some excerpts from a document that has false claims
 supporting Proprietary Software.
 
 However, it is worthwhile to mention here that the OSS (Open Source
 Software) does not match the advanced functionalities of many of the
 commercial (proprietory) software that is in the market. Image
 processing and analysis capabilities of the open source software is
 not comparable to the commercial software when one require to carry
 out advanced data manipulations, image fusion, 3D modeling,
 ortho-correction, auto-georeferencing, stereo-image/air photo
 interpretation, advanced geospatial analysis etc., In such cases,
 certain proprietary software become an integral part of the Spatial
 Data Infrastructures, which can not be avoided. At a later stage the
 some of the proprietary software need to be purchased.
 
 It is a well known fact that web portal that run with OSS are neither
 OGC-compliant nor
 interoperable. At the present juncture it is only possible to
 establish the KSDI Geoportal
 with the available COTS enterprise software.
 
 The detailed PDF document will be emailed on demand.
 
 Ravi Kumar
 
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Comment on OSGeo Project Marketing template before we set it in stone

2010-06-06 Thread Chris Puttick
The ODF adoption/marketing committee of OASIS would be ever so annoyed about 
your referencing ODF as the OpenOffice.org format as the whole point is that 
OpenDocument is not a memory dump of an application converted to some vague 
approximation of XML, but a genuine open standard which OpenOffice.org have 
made its default file format. Among the supporting evidence is that is the 
default format of KOffice as well as of OpenOffice and its derivatives. Oh and 
its being a published standard and legal status...

- Original Message -
 You are going to have to ask Tyler for more detail. For my part I have
 seen them handed out; raised a couple issues with respect to Font use,
 made an open office template for slides and workbooks myself for
 foss4g  and that is all I know.



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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Comment on OSGeo Project Marketing template before we set it in stone

2010-06-05 Thread Chris Puttick
The graphics team assures me I have no understanding of typography either (nor 
anything else to do with graphics), but that might be more about my insistence 
that they try tools that are not part of Adobe CS*. Particularly after I 
suggested the alternatives might be good enough for them to do their jobs!

I'd be licence-aware (because you want to embed the font into the PDF and have 
it available for others to use as needed) and stick to one typeface - for a 
nice modern Sans look I'd consider URW Gothic L (distributed under the GPLv2) 
or more traditional Sans Serif look go with Liberation Sans (Arial-ish) as 
kindly provided by Redhat. Both are available with all good Linux distributions 
and available for free download for users of operating systems that do not have 
these fonts in their repositories (or even gasp don't have repositories...).

Cheers

Chris

- Original Message -
 Thanks for the feedback Jason:
 
 On 05/06/10 05:50, Jason Birch wrote:
 
 Couple comments based entirely off the PDF:
 
 
 - The typography needs some work. Mix of serif, sans serif, italics,
 bold is a bit confused.
 Typography is not my strong point.
 Does anyone have suggestions as to what should be used?
 Even better would be to edit the styles at:
 https://svn.osgeo.org/osgeo/livedvd/gisvm/trunk/doc/descriptions/postgis_overview.odt
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 - Would be nice to see some header/footer graphics or at least colour.
 
 
 - I really, really, really, really don't like the inclusion of the
 commercial support line. Unless it points at the OSGeo service
 provider registry.
 One of the standard questions people as at FOSS4G stands at
 conferences is Who do I call if my Open Source application breaks?
 Hence I think it is important to link to commercial support.
 
 Many projects have a jump page listing companies which provide support
 for their project. Would that be suitable?
 
 I agree that using the OSGeo support service is a good idea:
 http://www.osgeo.org/search_profile Any chance we could create sexier
 URL for the support page, which is easier to remember.
 Eg: http://support.osgeo.org
 And http://support.osgeo.org/postgis (for project specific search)
 
 Note, the OSGeo LiveDVD also contains project which are not listed on
 the OSGeo Support service, so they will need to link elsewhere.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 Jason
 
 
 On 4 June 2010 04:34, Cameron Shorter wrote:
 
 
 To support this, I've created the attached pdf template. Please review
 and provide feedback before we set the template in stone, and ask all
 projects to create material against this template.
 
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 Geospatial Director
 Tel: +61 (0)2 8570 5050
 Mob: +61 (0)419 142 254
 
 Think Globally, Fix Locally
 Geospatial Solutions enhanced with Open Standards and Open Source
 http://www.lisasoft.com
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] are there any unpaid developers?

2010-04-20 Thread Chris Puttick

- Miles Fidelman mfidel...@meetinghouse.net wrote:

 I can't think of any successful (wide adoption, long-term 
 sustainability) open source projects that are pure labors of love.

Well, maybe Bacula? Vague geospatial connection in that it is primarily 
developed by one of the founders of Autodesk, now retired and living in 
Switzerland. Is awesome enterprise-class backup software; there are people 
making money from it, but I think the core development for years has been 
mostly Kern Sibbald.

Chris

 
 Miles Fidelman
 
 -- 
 In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.
 Infnord  practice, there is.    Yogi Berra
 
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] What GeoSpatial Open Source Software do Surveyors use?

2010-04-01 Thread Chris Puttick
Well we have surveyors trialling Total Open Station into gvSIG and people using 
Leica's software into gvSIG; I guess here is the message that into GIS is a 
move forward for all but building survey and that there are open source GIS 
packages well up to the job.

And for building survey? Well, we're doing some work with various open source 
tools to generate dense point clouds from photos; we think the resulting output 
could reach millimetre accuracy using known cameras/lenses and with many shots. 
Photograph, process, measure at your leisure... And a lovely 3D photo-realistic 
model for client as an output too!

Does that count?

Chris

- Cameron Shorter cameron.shor...@gmail.com wrote:

 I'm giving a presentation on GeoSpatial Open Source at the
 international 
 Surveyors conference here in Sydney.
 http://www.fig2010.com/
 
 I'd like advice on what use cases and Open Source packages I should 
 focus on during the presentation.
 Feedback from Surveyors welcomed.
 
 -- 
 Cameron Shorter
 Geospatial Solutions Manager
 Tel: +61 (0)2 8570 5050
 Mob: +61 (0)419 142 254
 
 Think Globally, Fix Locally
 Geospatial Solutions enhanced with Open Standards and Open Source
 http://www.lisasoft.com
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Whitebox GAT

2010-03-26 Thread Chris Puttick
Hi

Really exciting concept, I very much like the idea of letting the user see the 
algorithm; I just differ from other people's views on the use of .net. This is 
effectively a closed technology and one controlled by a company that has no 
interested in the sustainability of the solutions created within it. The use of 
.net also limits the platforms on which the solution can be deployed; 
strategically that is poor i.e. the limiting of choices in one area because of 
the choices in another. I would be interested, I imagine off-list, in your 
reasons for choosing that closed development approach for something you wanted 
to make very open in other ways.

Regards

Chris

- John Lindsay jlind...@uoguelph.ca wrote:

 Hello, 
 
 I wanted to let you know about a new open-source GIS project that I
 have initiated called Whitebox Geospatial Analysis Tools. Whitebox GAT
 is a user-friendly and expendable GIS with significant capabilities
 for spatial analysis. In developing Whitebox GAT I have taken a
 transparent approach to the open-source paradigm. That is, if the user
 would like to know how a particular tool's algorithm works, they need
 not download the source code and wade through the immense code base to
 find the few lines of relevant code. Instead, each tool has a 'View
 Code' button that will bring up the specific code related to the tool.
 Furthermore, they are able to convert the code into other programming
 languages. The idea is to remove some of the barriers that exist
 between the developer community and the user community. My analogy is
 that commercial software is like a locked library where only a few
 select individuals have the right to access the information contained
 within; most open source software packages, at least from the
 viewpoint of the user, is like a public library but there is no
 cataloging system and the books are all written in Greek; Whitebox is
 much more like the Internet. You can download Whitebox GAT from:
 
 http://www.uoguelph.ca/~hydrogeo/Whitebox/index.html
 
 I'd certainly appreciate any feedback that you may have.
 
 John Lindsay, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
 Dept. of Geography, Univ. of Guelph
 Guelph, Ont. N1G 2W1   CANADA
 Phone: (519) 824-4120 x56074
 Fax: (519) 837-2940
 Email:  jlind...@uoguelph.ca
 Department Web: www.uoguelph.ca/geography/
 Personal Web: http://www.uoguelph.ca/geography/faculty/lindsay.html
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Switchboard: +44 (0)1865 263 800
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Re: Whitebox GAT (Chris Puttick)

2010-03-26 Thread Chris Puttick
Please understand I am in no way criticising your software, which sounds of 
interest although out of reach for me. I am also highly appreciative of the 
work you and others like you put into developing solutions which you then share 
with others and I do what I can to contribute too. I am just hoping to persuade 
you and others that .net has far more bad points than good and to consider 
using a different software development framework/tools in the future.

I find it sensible to stare warily at gift-horses associated with companies 
whose primary stated purpose is the maximisation of shareholder value. Paid-for 
software of the license to use variety is a legacy concept fighting hard for 
survival; those companies whose entire business model is paid-for software are 
seeking all sorts of methods to ensure they can continue to profit from those 
business models. The majority of methods being adopted are, like .net, all 
about lock-in, about making it harder and more costly to move from the 
incumbent (and encumbered) solution. Hence why I would suggest the use of that 
particular framework (and there are so many to chose from that are as good or 
better, even before taking into account the cross-platform bonus feature) is a 
bad thing; its apparent convenience hides a massive cost base, both upfront and 
TCO.

My job, as sad as it may be, is strategic. I have to think about the future of 
the organisation for which I work with two over-riding drivers for the 
decisions I make in my area of responsibility: make it better and make it 
cheaper. The former requires usability, flexibility, maximisation of choice, 
and functionality; the latter requires elimination of lock-in to ensure the 
lowest cost options can be considered. Both tend to mean open solutions are 
given a high weighting. I can't focus on the immediacy of convenience, as so 
many of my peers have; evidence has shown the end result is no more money is 
made/saved by the use of IT than is spent on the IT and all too often less.

So that means absolutely no .net. Applications written against mono are more 
likely to be considered, although I personally believe that developing mono as 
a poor relation clone of .net is a mistake and a tragic waste of effort; 
innovation is required to disrupt, not poor copies. Almost all of the software 
we are deploying in the organisation, GIS or otherwise, is entirely platform 
neutral. Versions exist that can run on many operating systems and even 
different processor architectures. Software we are developing internally we 
endeavour to make as open as possible in the same spirit; for example gvSIG 
OADE is made available compiled for Mac OSX of which we have exactly 0/300 
computers using.

I guess it is a matter of perspective. I want to have the widest set of choices 
professionally and personally want the largest number of choices to be 
available for others. Those who sell software licences want choices to be 
limited to their platform, whether that be operating system or ERP tools. I'd 
like to have the choice to try your app, which has interesting user education 
opportunities, but it would remove the choice of desktop operating system. Ahh 
well.

Chris

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CIO
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Direct: +44 (0)1865 980 718
Switchboard: +44 (0)1865 263 800
Mobile: +44 (0)7908 997 146
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- John Lindsay jlind...@uoguelph.ca wrote:

 Hi Chris,
 
 Thank you for your feedback. I think, however, you might be staring a
 gift horse in the mouth. I write software primarily because I need it
 and am happy to share it with others. For me, open-source is about
 sharing ideas, innovating, and improving education. I'm fortunate that
 I don't need to rely on my programming to make money. Like most
 computer users, I use Windows and .NET is the framework that we have.
 It's an excellent framework, despite what some may think of the
 company that developed it. I understand that many people chose other
 operating systems (and good for them!) but I'm also aware that the
 Mono framework allows for the possibility of running Whitebox GAT on
 Linux/Mac. There are currently people working on porting Whitebox over
 using Mono. I suspect, however, that there are some out there who
 would still not be pleased with the use of Mono as a framework. The
 fact of the matter is that not everybody will be happy all of the
 time. If this isn't the solution that suits you, I'm sure there are
 others that are more suited. And that's fine by me. It's just nice
 that people out there are working hard every day to ensure that you
 have choices, isn't it?
 
 -- 
 John Lindsay, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
 Dept. of Geography, Univ. of Guelph
 Guelph, Ont. N1G 2W1   CANADA
 Phone: (519) 824-4120 x56074
 Fax: (519) 837-2940
 Email:  jlind...@uoguelph.ca
 Department Web: www.uoguelph.ca/geography/
 Personal Web:
 http://www.uoguelph.ca/geography/people/faculty/lindsay.shtml

Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Re: Whitebox GAT (Chris Puttick)

2010-03-26 Thread Chris Puttick
Terribly off-topic now, so feel free to stop reading...

- Brian Russo br...@beruna.org wrote:

 It wasn't directed at you Chris, nor specifically at anyone.
 
 I just think the general tone of this conversation is pretty
 unproductive. Sure people have reasons about being strategic
 everything but maybe it's just how I'm reading it but I just see the
 old, familiar tones of the Free Software Movement which is do it
 my
 way (100% free) or the highway. I don't think that helps anyone..

You can take it on faith or a Google that I'm pragmatic on the issue. I've 
explained why I think .net is a poor strategic choice, and that my motivations 
are strategic. I am all too well aware that many IT decisions are based on 
convenience and short term outlook, and pretty sure that's a major factor in...

 
 It's all well and good if you're in a small organisation with 300 pcs
 or whatever like Chris P and you have that sort of latitude.. but
 people forget that most organisations aren't driven by cost or
 ideology - they're driven by business value. Openness is no different
 than being Green/Sustainable. It has to make good business sense in
 order to be the right decision. I can't go to my bosses and say we
 have to do this because it's open source. They won't care and I
 don't
 blame them.

...not realising high or often any business value. Business value is where what 
you expend money and get more in return than you spent. Incredibly easy to 
measure in small businesses with few employees and a simple business model, 
harder the larger the business or the more complex the concept of value becomes 
e.g. in a charity or government organisation. There is good evidence that 
collectively western economies have spent more on IT than they have realised in 
value.

The business case is not simple, any more than it is in marketing; but here's 
my base position in simple terms. I select solutions that maximise our future 
choices and reduce our costs; a further benefit is derived if I can move any 
remaining costs from fixed annual overhead to per employee or pure capital; 
while there may be short term pain as people get used to the changes, any 
increase in costs for that short period will be more than offset by the long 
term decrease in costs and increases in flexibility for the organisation. 

Luckily for me I don't have to justify to others other than in my long term 
results. I'm aware that this continues to be a rare privilege for the top of 
the information systems tree and that many organisations continue to not have 
technical expertise at the highest level, resulting in many decisions in that 
area being taken with the wrong information and wrong motivations. I'm working 
on that too.

There are other aspects to openness that may derive negative value for some 
organisations e.g. opening data - great for archaeology, bankruptcy for 
marketing companies, a matter for the courts for financial companies. But open 
source solutions for your organisation's IT has no downsides. Unless there are 
no open source solutions that can be made to do the job.

Sorry this thread has deteriorated into a management philosophy discussion. I'm 
here mostly for the open, I'm not so strong on the geospatial...

Cheers

Chris


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Re: IS EVERYONE HERE FAST ASLEEP? was: Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] OKF / OSGeo response to the consultation on opening Ordnance Survey data

2010-02-24 Thread Chris Puttick
Sorry Jo; Schuyler, personally I hadn't realised a response would be necessary. 
I'd assumed it would be a given that OSGeo would be supporting this...

So +1 to what Jo said.

And come to think of it, +1 to what Schuyler said too!

Chris


- Schuyler Erle schuy...@nocat.net wrote:

 On Mon, 2010-02-22 at 16:26 +0100, Jo Walsh wrote:
  dear a...@osgeo,
  
  In sending this mail I'm following the protocol for letters of
 support 
  coming from OSGeo:
 
 http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Protocol_for_requesting_letter_of_support
  
  As you may have heard, there's a public consultation running in the
 UK
  on options for open licensing national mapping data maintained by
  Ordnance Survey.
 
 Is everyone on this mailing list dead? Or asleep? How is it that no
 one
 has responded to this inquiry yet? Have we not, at least some of us,
 been agitating for the proposed outcome for years? Does this issue
 not,
 at least in principle, affect us all? Have you all forgotten that
 your
 software is awesome, but it's useless -- without data?
 
 I want to go on record as being 100% in favor of OSGeo providing a
 letter of support for this response to the OSGB consultation. The
 principle of Open Public Data is completely in harmony with the
 ideals
 and objectives of the OSGeo Foundation. This is a chance for us to see
 a
 change for the better in Ordnance Survey policy, a change that will
 serve as a signal example to other NMAs around the world.
 
 *Please* simply respond to the previous email with at least a +1 or a
 single word of support, if you'd like to see the OSGeo Board respond
 to
 this request in the affirmative. *Please*, for the love of God, don't
 let us as a community deserve to be ashamed of ourselves for our own
 ungenerous apathy. According to the Board's protocol for such things,
 you only have a few hours, so pipe up now, while you have the chance.
 
 SDE
 
 
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[OSGeo-Discuss] Fwd: [Antiquist] Fwd: Ordinance Survey consultation

2010-01-30 Thread Chris Puttick
One to circulate :)

Cheers

Chris

- Forwarded Message -
From: Chris Puttick cputt...@gmail.com
To: Chris Puttick chris.putt...@thehumanjourney.net
Sent: Saturday, 30 January, 2010 15:39:47 GMT +00:00 GMT Britain, Ireland, 
Portugal
Subject: Fwd: [Antiquist] Fwd: Ordinance Survey consultation


-- Forwarded message --
From: Richard Pope rich...@memespring.co.uk
Date: 27 January 2010 10:40
Subject: [uk-government-data-developers] Ordinance Survey consultation
To: uk-government-data-develop...@googlegroups.com


Whatever your views on the opening up of geospatial information
(postcodes / boundaries / maps health districts etc) please take a few
minutes to fill this in:
http://osconsult.ernestmarples.com
If you don't have time right now, put a reminder in the calendar for
the 16th March (closes on the 17th).
If all voices in this issue are heard then hopefully there will be a
fair outcome to the consultation.
Richard

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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] OS for Topograph

2009-11-24 Thread Chris Puttick
I am, as some members of this list will know, not that knowledgeable about 
GIS/survey/maps and stuff, but I think maybe you want:

https://developer.berlios.de/projects/tops/

Cheers

Chris

- Marcelo Fidelis fidelis.marc...@gmail.com wrote:

 Hi,
 
 
 
 I am a student of IFGoias, it is a federal university of Brasil in
 Goiania/Goias. I would like to develop an application that could be
 used for construct shapes (polygons) from GPS points. A simple
 aplication that could perform the basic features of Topograph. First I
 would like to know if there are already some open software that do the
 same. If ther is not, what could be the best archtecture for this job?
 Which software would be the best to use for this task?
 
 
 Thaks for any help,
 
 
 Marcelo G. Fidelis
 --
 
 Mike Ditka - If God had wanted man to play soccer, he wouldn't have
 given us arms. 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Finding an OSGEO-related job in London

2009-10-15 Thread Chris Puttick
http://www.osgeo.org/uk

:)


- Matthew Pulis mpu...@gmail.com wrote:

 Thanks everyone for the comments. I'm reading and learning :)
 
 With regards to your reply Tyler, is there any UK chapter to which I
 can subscribe please? If yes where chan I check for it?
 
 Thanks!
 
 
 On Thu, Oct 15, 2009 at 7:40 AM, Tyler Mitchell (OSGeo) 
 tmitch...@osgeo.org  wrote:
 
 
 To add to Chris' comments... I suggest any job seeker offer to host an
 OSGeo-UK meetup... bring the employers to you instead :)
 
 Seriously though - there may be an opportunity here for those who have
 some
 momentum for a local OSGeo chapter nearby. Get on the mailing list,
 ask for
 ideas for a venue to meet and plan a meeting using the wiki or mailing
 list
 - a couple folks will often volunteer to do a talk or provide a
 discussion
 point.
 
 I believe that many local chapter OSGeo'ers are just waiting for a
 chance to
 chat over a beer or talk and plan in a local boardroom. The upside to
 helping plan it is you can give yourself a speaking slot to introduce
 what
 you've been doing/playing with/learning and a URL to your CV at the
 end will
 drive the point home :)
 
 Best wishes!
 Tyler
 
 
 
 
 original message-
 From: Chris Puttick chris.putt...@thehumanjourney.net
 To: OSGeo Discussions discuss@lists.osgeo.org
 Date: Thu, 15 Oct 2009 05:34:18 + (GMT)
 -
 
 
  And of course OA Digital, but while in the UK is not London. London
 is
 under the
  influence of the if it don't cost, it ain't worth nothing although
 we're
 
  hopeful revent gov't policy announcements and news like that of the
 recent
 
  systems change at the London Stock Exchange might change that; if
 there's
 going
  to be anything, I'd sniff around the London mayor's office,
 Transport for
 London
  and some of the London councils.
 
  Chris
 
  - Landon Blake lbl...@ksninc.com wrote:
 
  Matthew,
 
 
 
  It doesn?t look like anyone responded to your post, so I will offer
  some brief comments. I don?t think it likely that you will find a
 job
  focused specifically on open source GIS. I am one of the moderator
 of
  the OSGeo Jobs mailing list, and job postings there are quite rare
 in
  our current economy.
 
 
 
  I think you may have to settle for a job in GIS, with perhaps an
  opportunity to occasionally dabble in open source GIS software. I
 can
  think of only a handful of companies that work extensively with
 open
  source GIS software, especially on the desktop. Examples are
  Refractions Research, Vivid Solutions, and LISASoft. The first two
 are
  Canadian companies, the second is in Australia.
 
 
 
  A better option may be to take a ?regular? GIS job but to hone your
  programming skill set by volunteering with one of the OSGeo
 projects.
  (Let me know if you are really bored. I could put you to work on a
  couple of things right now.) :]
 
 
 
  Or you could possibly work part-time as a consultant trying to help
  organizations get started with open source GIS.
 
 
 
  At any rate, post a link to your resume on the OSGeo Jobs mailing
  list. That can?t hurt.
 
 
 
 
  Landon
 
  Office Phone Number: (209) 946-0268
 
  Cell Phone Number: (209) 992-0658
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  From: discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org
  [mailto: discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org ] On Behalf Of Matthew
 Pulis
  Sent: Tuesday, October 13, 2009 2:12 AM
  To: discuss
  Subject: [OSGeo-Discuss] Finding an OSGEO-related job in London
 
  Hi,
 
  I am moving to London in late January 2010 and am trying to find a
 job
  /
  career in GIS preferably using Open Source GIS. I am finding it
 quite
  hard
 
  to find job openings in this field, especially in the GIS-T area;
  which area
  is my area of expertise. Anyone can recommend some job hunting
  websites
  which are more attributed to OSGEO please?
 
 
  (Sorry for double posting but the previous one had the wrong
 subject
  pasted)
 
 
  Thanks,
 
  Matthew
 
  --
  Matthew Pulis
  URL : http://www.matthewpulis.info | http://www.solutions-lab.net
  MSN : pulis_matth...@] hotmail.com
  ICQ : 145951110
  Skype : solutions-lab.net
 
 
 
  Warning:
  Information provided via electronic media is not guaranteed against
  defects including translation and transmission errors. If the
 reader
  is not the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any
  dissemination, distribution or copying of this communication is
  strictly prohibited. If you have received this information in
 error,
  please notify the sender immediately.
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  http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
 
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Finding an OSGEO-related job in London

2009-10-14 Thread Chris Puttick
And of course OA Digital, but while in the UK is not London. London is under 
the influence of the if it don't cost, it ain't worth nothing although we're 
hopeful revent gov't policy announcements and news like that of the recent 
systems change at the London Stock Exchange might change that; if there's going 
to be anything, I'd sniff around the London mayor's office, Transport for 
London and some of the London councils.

Chris

- Landon Blake lbl...@ksninc.com wrote:

 Matthew,
 
 
 
 It doesn’t look like anyone responded to your post, so I will offer
 some brief comments. I don’t think it likely that you will find a job
 focused specifically on open source GIS. I am one of the moderator of
 the OSGeo Jobs mailing list, and job postings there are quite rare in
 our current economy.
 
 
 
 I think you may have to settle for a job in GIS, with perhaps an
 opportunity to occasionally dabble in open source GIS software. I can
 think of only a handful of companies that work extensively with open
 source GIS software, especially on the desktop. Examples are
 Refractions Research, Vivid Solutions, and LISASoft. The first two are
 Canadian companies, the second is in Australia.
 
 
 
 A better option may be to take a “regular” GIS job but to hone your
 programming skill set by volunteering with one of the OSGeo projects.
 (Let me know if you are really bored. I could put you to work on a
 couple of things right now.) :]
 
 
 
 Or you could possibly work part-time as a consultant trying to help
 organizations get started with open source GIS.
 
 
 
 At any rate, post a link to your resume on the OSGeo Jobs mailing
 list. That can’t hurt.
 
 
 
 
 Landon
 
 Office Phone Number: (209) 946-0268
 
 Cell Phone Number: (209) 992-0658
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 From: discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org
 [mailto:discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org] On Behalf Of Matthew Pulis
 Sent: Tuesday, October 13, 2009 2:12 AM
 To: discuss
 Subject: [OSGeo-Discuss] Finding an OSGEO-related job in London
 
 Hi,
 
 I am moving to London in late January 2010 and am trying to find a job
 /
 career in GIS preferably using Open Source GIS. I am finding it quite
 hard
 
 to find job openings in this field, especially in the GIS-T area;
 which area
 is my area of expertise. Anyone can recommend some job hunting
 websites
 which are more attributed to OSGEO please?
 
 
 (Sorry for double posting but the previous one had the wrong subject
 pasted)
 
 
 Thanks,
 
 Matthew
 
 --
 Matthew Pulis
 URL : http://www.matthewpulis.info | http://www.solutions-lab.net
 MSN : pulis_matth...@] hotmail.com
 ICQ : 145951110
 Skype : solutions-lab.net
 
 
 
 Warning:
 Information provided via electronic media is not guaranteed against
 defects including translation and transmission errors. If the reader
 is not the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any
 dissemination, distribution or copying of this communication is
 strictly prohibited. If you have received this information in error,
 please notify the sender immediately. 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] discussion or FUD

2009-10-10 Thread Chris Puttick
Happy to oblige - but I'm not a member of whatever group the FUD message is 
posted in...

Chris

- Paolo Cavallini cavall...@faunalia.it wrote:

 http://www.linkedin.com/e/vaq/7776133/55322/7269457/view_disc/
 I would appreciate if somebody from OSGeo could jump in the discussion
 - it may get
 rather pointless, but leaving such FUD around without a reply will not
 be good IMHO.
 All the best.
 -- 
 Paolo Cavallini: http://www.faunalia.it/pc
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Next 5 years for OSGeo

2009-10-04 Thread Chris Puttick

- Eric Wolf ebw...@gmail.com wrote:

snip
 
 Maybe we should focus on a GIS on a stick product rather than a
 LiveDVD?


Jo Cook wrote you a Windows one of those already :) - so you could even give to 
the students for ongoing use of the tools and data. And of course that is about 
as functional a toolset (in toto) as exists for GIS, open or closed source...

http://www.archaeogeek.com/blog/2009/09/01/portable-gis-version-2-released/

Cheers

Chris

PS This email is of course marketing so those who don't want any shouldn't read 
it ;)


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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Next 5 years for OSGeo

2009-09-30 Thread Chris Puttick

- Christopher Schmidt crschm...@crschmidt.net wrote:
  
  Speak to whom? Decision makers with no real knowledge of the thing
 they are
  signing off on, being advised by lazy people who have some
 understanding but
  want to ensure they cover their back and don't have to try too hard
 rather
  than implement the best solution for the least money?
 
 No, to the lazy people. If your code is good enough, then the right
 way -- 
 even the lazy way -- will be the Open Source way. In order to really
 succeed,

You've not been hanging with enough lazy people. Laziness is taking the path of 
least resistance; in IT that means using the brand most people know about 
regardless if it is the best tool for the job. You think people went to NT 
Server because it was better than Netware? It wasn't. People chose MS SQL 
Server because it was better than its competitors, open or closed source? It 
wasn't (and in so many ways still isn't). Marketing. Branding. Lots of ferrying 
decision makers to shiny demo labs and glossy events and making them feel good 
about the product, regardless of the fact that driving sports cars around race 
tracks has nothing to do with the promo'd products effectiveness (although such 
events should provide some pointers about value for money...).

Laziness is going with the solution most people have heard of; in particular 
not having to look at lots of options and not having to come up with a real 
defence in the event of issues arising from the choices made. No one ever got 
fired for buying IBM was a line in the 80s regarding computing solution 
purchases; in GIS right now I guess you all know the products in the typical 
organisational list - how many open source ones are on it? Is it because the 
open source products can't do the job?

For sure OSGeo and most open source products will never have big marketing 
budgets, so no sports cars, F1 practice days, Grand Prix tickets, WSB tickets 
(to name a few I've recently been offered as a decision-maker); but there are 
other kinds of marketing and that we can, should and do engage in. And the next 
time I meet a typical peer at an IT management conference and he has gvSIG on 
his desktop GIS shortlist and his SDI components are all open source or at 
least open standards compliant, I'll know the marketing is paying off!

NB In my case laziness is probably avoiding learning to be a developer (and GIS 
person) while still wanting to be of use...


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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] OSGeo server admin

2009-09-28 Thread Chris Puttick
Or, of course, another option would be those members of OSGeo who are more or 
less corporate members could volunteer time of a member of staff who would 
otherwise be not contributing to the OSGeo effort.

And in defence of all those who are not developers, being a sys admin is rather 
harder than printing brochures or accounting. Some might even suggest it is as 
hard as being a developer. But we wouldn't want to listen to them, would we ;)

Cheers

Chris

- Paolo Cavallini cavall...@faunalia.it wrote:

 Hi all.
 Concerning ticket http://trac.osgeo.org/osgeo/ticket/392
 I think the discussion should be brought to the attention of the list.
 For my experience, I do not
 think server administration is well suited for volunteer work. To me,
 server administration is a
 service, more or less like accounting or printing brochures.
 Moreover, I do not think precious developer time (the main limiting
 resource for open source
 software IMHO) is profitably spent administering servers (but thanks
 to all who are doing it!).
 In short, I'm suggesting to hire a part time server admin, who should
 be in charge of software
 upgrades (e.g. the trac) etc.
 All the best.
 -- 
 Paolo Cavallini: http://www.faunalia.it/pc
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] OSGeo Next five years

2009-09-17 Thread Chris Puttick
Not entirely an OSGeo specific point, but this type of criticism open source 
is hard, closed source is easy is not uncommon. Some 17 years of experience 
working with IT in organisations gets me a one word response to such a claim I 
will not repeat here, but it starts with a b and sounds a lot like hillocks...

What closed source, marketing driven, products tend to focus on is the 
appearance of easy. It has been easy to set up a Microsoft Exchange server for 
over 10 years, in the sense of starting with a server and successfully sending 
and receiving email, etc.. As so many compromised servers over the same 10 
years easily demonstrate, it is hard (and requires expertise) to setup said 
server to only send/receive email just for those who should be able to 
send/receive email, hard to get said mail server to scale with your 
organisation, hard to unpick it after a malware infestation (or bad AV update), 
hard to migrate it to another mail server, nearly impossible to use it from 
your choice of desktop platforms and actually impossible to deploy it on your 
choice of server platforms. There are many other examples, many of which from 
Microsoft, with the same story - deceptively easy to get going, desperately 
hard to make it do what you finally realise is best for *your* organisation.

Simplicity in the sense of does not require expertise to make work almost 
certainly means impossible or very, very difficult to finally make it work the 
way you need it. My exposure to .net developments and the final convoluted 
efforts developers go through to bend to their will have provided sufficient 
evidence for me to tell colleagues in other organisations that it is a mistake 
to be deceived by rapid early progress. The tortoise and the hare is a very old 
story...

So if you want simplicity, put some of the building blocks together for the new 
user; build VMs with complete working setups that just need network 
configuration and data to start doing things. But please don't repeat the 
approach of the marketeers, make something simple and restricted and then claim 
something that just ain't true!

Cheers

Chris


- Arnie Shore shor...@gmail.com wrote:

 As a very interested lurker, and as one who has developed an Open
 Source Computer-Aided-Dispatch system that has embedded google's maps
 product, I can tell you that one of the deterrents I see is the
 relative complexity of an Open Source GIS implementation - as compared
 to the use of GMaps, which also, of course and notably, is free. The
 single source of both the tiles as well as the API is relatively
 straightforward for the non-cartographer novice.
 
 My user community includes a fair-sized portion who have never before
 implemented a web-server-based system, and our package is designed to
 minimize the number of elements that need separate collection and
 configuration. To tell them that they need a map server in addition to
 the stack that WAMP, XAMPP, MAMP, installs in a single executable will
 turn away too many candidates, IMO. In our case, the tile-serving
 capabilities could be met by a rather limited set of server-side
 functions that are OL-aware. But I haven't seen anything like that in
 the panoply of products that comprises the OSGeo world. Please correct
 me on this if such exits.
 
 (Further evidence of the importance of the ease-of-implementation
 issue is the proliferation of open source libraries that include
 capabilities taht are based on a GMaps foundation.)
 
 I will say that my users - many of whom are into emergency operations
 - indeed are asking for an implementation that wd allow operation
 while disconnected from the Internet. Impossible in a GMaps-based
 solution, but completely feasible in one based on OpenLayers plus
 locally stored OSM tiles. Users I've pointed to the available OSM
 sites have told me that the level of detail wd be completely
 satisfactory as a suitable replacement for GMaps. Which is a
 critically important data point, IMO.
 
 My perception of the current evolution of the world of Open Source GIS
 is toward greater complexity and richness. Which certainly makes for
 excitement and challenge for its enthusiasts; but that isn't doing
 much for those of us along the borders looking over the fences, and
 with limited hours available to hop that fence and get involved.
 
 Make entry easier than it is, folks. Please?
 
 A. Shore
 Annapolis, MD
 
 
 
 On Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 5:09 PM, Ravi  ravivundava...@yahoo.com 
 wrote:
 
 
 Hi,
 have been going through all the wishes, all the arguments about how
 Open Source GIS must evolve etc. ...
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Mac Pro collocation for OSGeo

2009-08-21 Thread Chris Puttick

- Mateusz Loskot mate...@loskot.net wrote:

 Chris Puttick wrote:
  If anyone has a use for it, we can provide space, protected power
 and
   a connection
 
 I used to use this machine as a part of http://buildbot.osgeo.org
 farm.
 It could also be used for other purposes, like live demo of
 GeoServer/MapServer, nightly builds and binary packaging.
 
  (probably in our new French office which has more spare bandwidth, 
  but we can get it from here to France).
 
 Hmm, France is quite a different location than UK, but thanks for the
 offer, if I won't find anything, I could ship my machine to
 France, why not ;-)

From London, Northern France is not so different to most of the UK (travel 
time, weather, etc.), except the wine is cheaper...

  Not quite colo quality, but should be enough for while.
 
 I'd prefer to find something for a longer while :-)
 Shipping 20kg across Europe several times a year may be expansive.

A while meaning 1 year, no guarantees after that.

  We'd have to restrict bandwidth still, so depends what you think it
 
  would need bandwidth-wise.
 
 Do you mean bandwidth limit or monthly transfer limit?
 I'm sure 1mbps of bandwidth is enough.
 Uploading/downloading data like backups can take longer
 but none of these operation need to be fast for me.
 Distributed building/testing is bandwidth efficient as
 it does not transfer tons of MB, just a message and some reports,
 plus initial checkouts and further updates from repository, of
 course.

Bandwidth limit of 1mbps would be no problem (said office has a 10 mbps fibre).
 
 By the way, you could use this machine for your own purposes in the
 office, though more disk-oriented than cpu-demanding ones. For
 instance,
 just put a disk and use it as a file server, backup server, etc.
 So, the CPU time could be dedicated more to OSGeo jobs.

All that sort of thing we try to do in the Oxford office - but because of that 
I'm not sure we can justify sparing bandwidth from there, plus major physical 
space constraints in the server room.
 
 Anyway, Chris thank you for your offer, Although, let's see if there
 would be option in UK.

No problem.

Chris


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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Open File Formats and ProprietaryAlgorithms[SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]

2009-08-21 Thread Chris Puttick
Well, according to this page: http://jpeg2000.epfl.ch/ v.5.1, courtesy in part 
Eastman Kodak, provides complete JP2 support at the decoding side - not sure 
whether that covers the tiling or other geo needs, but doesn't it sound worth 
investigating?

Chris


- Christopher Schmidt crschm...@crschmidt.net wrote:

 On Fri, Aug 21, 2009 at 08:27:13AM -0700, Landon Blake wrote:
  Thanks for the information Michael. I am downloading Opticks right
 now.
  :]
  
  I also found this Java library for JP2, thought I'm not sure how
  complete/up-to-date it is:
  
  http://jj2000.epfl.ch/
  
  Maybe we need a JPEG 2000 page on the OSGeo wiki.
 
 Note that JPEG 2000 support is different from JPEG 2000 support
 which
 works on geo-sized images. The tiling (or 'paging'? as Michael calls
 it) support that's supposed to be provided by OpenJPEG2000 has been
 coming 'real soon now' for about 18 months now from my uneducated
 observations, and until it's there, most tools using OpenJPEG for JP2s
 are
 going to suffering under much the same limitations.
 
 -- Chris
 
  Landon
  Office Phone Number: (209) 946-0268
  Cell Phone Number: (209) 992-0658
   
   
  
  -Original Message-
  From: discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org
  [mailto:discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org] On Behalf Of Considine,
 Michael
  Sent: Friday, August 21, 2009 8:09 AM
  To: OSGeo Discussions
  Subject: RE: [OSGeo-Discuss] Open File Formats and
  ProprietaryAlgorithms[SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]
  
  All,
  
  Opticks is an open source remote sensing application and
 development
  framework. We recently started the process to add JPEG 2000 support
 to
  our framework. We picked OpenJpeg to add JPEG 2000 support to our
  application. They are also open source. We currently support
 importing
  JPEG 2000 files but we are currently limited to the 4GB memory size
  after decoding.
  
  Our plan is to continue development and to upgrade to OpenJpeg 2.0
 once
  they have a stable release. That will allow Opticks to use a pager
 to
  display and support much larger files.
  
  Michael Considine
  
  -Original Message-
  From: discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org
  [mailto:discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org] On Behalf Of Bruce
 Bannerman
  Sent: Thursday, August 20, 2009 8:15 PM
  To: 'OSGeo Discussions'
  Subject: RE: [OSGeo-Discuss] Open File Formats and Proprietary
  Algorithms[SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]
  
  
  IMO:
  
  
  Just another thought on this issue (though we do seem to be
 recycling
  arguments over the years...):
  
  
  Assuming that I have a very large archive of spatial data, be it
 imagery
  or any other spatial format and that I store my data in a variety
 of
  proprietary formats:
  
  
  In ten years from now, can I be sure that:
  
  - the company that created, understands, and holds the IP in the 
data format will still be around?
  
  - there will still be software that runs on the then current
operating environment, that can read and 'fully exploit' the data
in the proprietary standard?
  
  - that this future software will work seamlessly with my then
 current 
spatial environment?
  
  - if all of the above risks prove to eventuate, can I be sure that
 I'll
be able to salvage my data into another format, retaining its
 complete
  
semantic context?
  
  
  IMO, it is a high risk proposition to lock public (or private)
 archives
  away in proprietary data formats. It makes more sense to use open
  standards and formats that are publically available.
  
  
  
  Bruce Bannerman
  
  
  
   
  
   -Original Message-
   From: discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org 
   [mailto:discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org] On Behalf Of Michael 
   P. Gerlek
   Sent: Friday, 21 August 2009 6:55 AM
   To: OSGeo Discussions
   Subject: RE: [OSGeo-Discuss] Open File Formats and 
   Proprietary Algorithms
   
   Some clarifications:
   

   
   - MrSID has both lossy and lossless modes
   
   - MrSID is not fractal based; it uses wavelets (and 
   arithmetic encoding)
   
   - you can't copyright algorithms; the MrSID source code 
   certainly is, however
   
   - MrSID relies on a number of patents, not all of which are 
   owned by LizardTech
   
   - reading MrSID does not require any fees; we have libraries 
   you can download, although they are not open source
   

   
   That said, some editorial comments (although I'm now wishing 
   I hadn't been so quick to rise to Landon's bait :-)
   

   
   - Some of you know the history of trying to open source 
   MrSID; I won't go into that here, except to say that 
   LizardTech doesn't own all of the required IP needed to make 
   that happen.
   
   - If we are speaking of the NAIP data, then no, it is not 
   exclusively available in MrSID format; it is also shipped as
 GeoTIFFs.
   
   - JPEG 2000 is a very robust open standard alternative to 
   MrSID, and a number of players already support it (including 
   LizardTech), but not enough to make it viable for certain 
   domains 

Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Examples of Opposition to Open Source/Open FileFormats in the United States

2009-08-19 Thread Chris Puttick
The view from the UK...

With other hats on I've been involved in trying to get government bodies in the 
UK to take a genuine interest in open source for the best part of 9 years, 
originally with a focus on the education sector. The recent announcement is 
very similar to one in 2002, which had more or less zero impact.

However there is a difference this time. Specifically a combination of 
developments, not least of which is that the UK Conservative party (UK right of 
centre, a little left of the Canadian Conservatives. Leftwing socialists by US 
standards ;) ) is both likely to win the next election and has come out 
strongly for the use of open source in government.

Successful lobbying (that's grassroots, allowing paid-for lobbyists is bad 
politics...) in the education arena has made some important progress, in 
particular the backing of a UK government agency, Becta, who provide advice on 
the use of technology in education.

There's also some backing at senior levels among the civil service and some 
shining examples of successful open source adoption among local governments. 
Importantly there has been recognition that part of the failing of the 2002 
announcement was down to poor purchasing guidance which both assumed all things 
supplied have a cost... There was also an expertise shortfall which meant the 
responsible agency failed to police IT elements of purchases. So where text of 
government tenders would invariably carefully step around the use of brand 
names and specifications that strongly implied specific brands, they would 
(illegally) name IT products as a requirement without showing the need for that 
exemption. This is being addressed and as a supplier we have already seen 
positive outcomes. I'm hearing positive news from other suppliers of open 
source solutions.

It helps, of course, that no matter how much we collectively try to pretend 
otherwise, Europe is something the UK is part of and is geographically very 
close. Almost daily comes news of another government body somewhere in Europe 
making huge savings and advances through adopting open source solutions. Can 
track developments in that area, including some of the UK news, through this 
handy site: http://www.osor.eu/ 

It also helps that a major national newspaper, The Guardian, is a supporter of 
open and has recently switched to using OpenOffice as its office suite. They 
mention it quite a lot :)

Cheers

Chris


- Bob Bruce (CON) bob.br...@gov.mb.ca wrote:

 Awhile ago I read that the government of the UK had adopted a policy
 to
 adopt open source software when it delivers best value for money
 and
 government agencies should where possible avoid being locked into
 proprietary software . I found their policy at:
 http://www.govtalk.gov.uk/policydocs/policydocs_document.asp?docnum=905
 and this BBC article discussed this issue:
 http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7910110.stm
 
 So it would appear that the government of the UK is making progress
 in
 being open to open source. Does anyone have any experiences that
 show
 that this policy is actually being followed?
 
 Bob Bruce
 
 From:
 discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org
 [mailto:discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org]
 On Behalf Of Landon Blake
 Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2009 1:56 PM
 To: OSGeo Discussions
 Subject: [OSGeo-Discuss] Examples of Opposition to Open Source/Open
 FileFormats in the United States
 
 It looks like I might have ruffled a few feathers with my earlier
 post
 about the lack of support for open source software in the United
 States.
 I was making a generalization, and didn't mean to criticize or
 downplay
 the efforts of advocates and government employees that are promoting
 open source software. I hope their advocacy continues, and I will do
 what I can to support it.
 
 I thought I would take a minute to post one or two articles that
 highlight the type of opposition/attitude that I was talking about.
 
 The first one isn't directly related to geospatial software, but it
 is
 related to the use of open source software and open file formats by
 government agencies in the United States. It has to do with the
 adoption
 of ODF (the file format used by Open Office).
 
 See the section on Massachusetts in this wikipedia article:
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenDocument_adoption
 Here is an article about legislation proposed in 2006 to do the same
 thing in Minnesota:
 http://www.informationweek.com/news/software/open_source/showArticle.jht
 ml?articleID=184429732
 
 These articles are old, and there may have been updates and new legal
 decisions that I am not aware of. You could check to ODF Alliance
 site
 for updates:
 
 http://www.odfalliance.org/mail_list.php
 
 There is no question in my mind that Microsoft opposed the adoption
 of
 ODF by state governments in the United States. If you don't think
 this
 is true, I've got a bridge I want to sell you. :]
 
 My second example involves the Autodesk suit 

Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] OSGeo friendly countries to live in

2009-08-17 Thread Chris Puttick
A tad unfair on Capetown I think - much of SA money is in GP, the province with 
Jo-burg and Pretoria in it and all the big companies; Cape Town and its 
residents took a lead in ending apartheid; the university appointed Dr Ramphele 
(a key player in the anti-apartheid struggle) as a Deputy VC in 1991.

What Cape Town does have is a great spread of industries as it has an 
incredible tourist industry (mix of beauty, surf and Robben Island), strong 
mining sector and an entrepreneurial culture. Like many places of beauty (and a 
temperate climate), people with money have tended to move there, and the World 
Cup (and probably FOSS4G!) boosted interest in property, leading to a booming 
real estate business.

Now, if you want more Africa, South Africa is not a good destination; Botswana 
or Ghana are probably more middle of the road in terms of demographics. But 
it's a very big continent with huge variance. Not sure any country or city is 
more Africa than another.

Chris

- Ravi ravivundava...@yahoo.com wrote:

 Nice research.. It was last at Capetown.. Wish it was at Joh--berg, as
 mentioned,  heard that .. that is more Africa than this Europe
 hammered into Africa (Cape Town.. a Rich Rich stinking rich guys
 place)
 
 --- On Mon, 17/8/09, Cameron Shorter cameron.shor...@gmail.com
 wrote:
 
  From: Cameron Shorter cameron.shor...@gmail.com
  Subject: [OSGeo-Discuss] OSGeo friendly countries to live in
  To: OSGeo Discussions discuss@lists.osgeo.org
  Date: Monday, 17 August, 2009, 2:12 AM
  Yves Jacolin has sliced FOSS4G http://2009.foss4g.org/ website
 hits to determine
  the number of FOSS4G attendees per million people, broken
  down by country. From this, you can get a feeling for the
  most OSGeo tolerant populations in the world (distorted
  around Australia due to the conference location).
 
  So what can we learn?
 
     * Japan and Mongolia are the place be in
  Asia
     * Chilli is the place to be in Latin
  America
     * Canada looks preferable to the US. I
  wonder how much the Canadian
       GeoConnections program is
  responsible for Canada's strong OSGeo
       industry.
     * There is a lot of interest across
  Europe, so FOSS4G 2010 should be
       a crowded event.
     * Africa seems to have learned all they
  need to know when FOSS4G
       attended Johannesburg last year,
  and won't be heading to Australia
       in force.
 
 
  You can view the maps here:
 http://cameronshorter.blogspot.com/2009/08/osgeo-friendly-countries-to-live-in.html
 
  and in French on Yves blog:
 
 http://georezo.net/blog/geolibre/2009/08/16/geolocalisation-des-visite-du-site-foss4g-2009/
 
  -- Cameron Shorter
  Geospatial Systems Architect
  Tel: +61 (0)2 8570 5050
  Mob: +61 (0)419 142 254
 
  Think Globally, Fix Locally
  Geospatial Solutions enhanced with Open Standards and Open
  Source
  http://www.lisasoft.com
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Workstation that starts fresh every time

2009-07-18 Thread Chris Puttick
And of course there is Portable GIS: 
http://www.archaeogeek.com/blog/portable-gis/ - with some tweaking that could 
easily achieve that objective. Depends on the scenario which would work best.

Chris

- Alex Mandel tech_...@wildintellect.com wrote:

 Joe was asking on IRC about ways to boot with a fresh copy of a GIS
 workstation every time, ie all changes made during the last use are
 gone.
 
 Here are some ideas:
 1.Install a live disc to a harddrive, it's read only by default so it
 will reset every time you boot. See http://www.pendrivelinux.com/
 Or take the harddrives out and just run from usb sticks.
 
 2.If all the machines in the room are just remote terminals, then you
 can run virtual images in something like vmware which has an option
 to
 revert back after each boot. Could also look at vmwareplayer which
 only
 lets you boot images to begin with.
 
 Either way the process starts with installing 1 machine, loading the
 software, configuration and files a creating a new image from this.
 You
 might want to jump over to the mailing list all about the Live-DVD
 stuff
 http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/live-demo
 
 Alex
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Webcasts of OSGIS 2009

2009-07-17 Thread Chris Puttick
Is odd, Qumu is apparently cross-platform (or at least can be).

Chris

- Tyler Mitchell (OSGeo) tmitch...@osgeo.org wrote:

 Awesome thanks - that's quite the good sleuthing :)
 
 Christian Willmes wrote:
  Hi,
  
  Thanks to a WinXP VM, I got out the URLs of the video streams. :-)
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] database replication

2009-07-06 Thread Chris Puttick
This might help:

http://www.archaeogeek.com/blog/2008/11/21/database-replication/

Regards

Chris

- carlos sousa springal...@gmail.com wrote:

 Kind Sirs,
 
 Being a novice postgreSQL user, i'm currently transfering from our
 current esri/arcsde/arcims/mssqlserver solution to a
 postgres/postgis/mapserver/
 openlayers solution.
 After this is down, the real server will be using software that is
 replicated in virtual machines used on external harddrives with a copy
 of the real server database.
 What I need to know is how should I execute a command, be it in the
 command line (prefferable because of scripting) or using some kind of
 gui tool like pgadminIII
 to let the virtual database get in sync with the real database when
 the external harddrive is connected to the real server.
 I've looked up sqlworkbench (no ubuntu binary) and slony (has to be
 compiled).
 I'm considering asking Ricardo from the GISVM project if he is
 available to help me think up a solution for this, you never know.
 
 
 Thanks in advance,
 
 Carlos 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Which GPS

2009-06-11 Thread Chris Puttick
Depends on the accuracy you hope to achieve, but you might want to look at the 
OpenMoko Freerunner. This has the advantage of also being a mobile phone i.e. 
the data being gathered can be synchronised with a server whenever there is a 
mobile signal, as well as be reviewed with gvSIG locally. The Freerunner also 
has a real mini USB port i.e. not just for charging, it can also be used with a 
proper keyboard.

Regards

Chris

- RAVI KUMAR ravivundava...@yahoo.com wrote:

 Hi,
 wish to introduce 'Mobile Mapping for administration', with open GIS
 in India.
 
 OpenGIS software:
 I find only BeeGIS and GVSIG, compatible with direct (online) data
 logging
 as well as off-line (when not surveying)possible. Will be happy to
 have pointers on other Open GIS software.
 
 Which GPS:
 wish to experiment with GPS before suggesting to the users on a
 combination
 of GPS (data logger) which can be used for collecting data and loading
 the same in the evening after work, on any computer.
 
 Accuracy: What are the merits I have to look for such that best
 possible accuracy (near equator or Latitude less than 20 Deg North).
 
 Cost: This is the most important factor, as the budget is modest.
 
 Scenario:
 1. Logger Pedals, GPS in pocket set to log location every 5 seconds.
 2. Note time and notes on a scribble pad in local language. (the data
logger only carries the GPS, even may not be aware of its function)
 3. Back at the base the GPS and notes are deposited with a system
 operator
who will log the data through bluetooth, and offer it to local
 administration on tasks like, Garbage removal, school attendance or
 even traffic snarls.
 
 This will help in the second step of a project where base GIS data is
 readied, and awaits societal use.
 
 Cheers
 
 Ravi Kumar
 
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Comparision between MapServer/OpenLayers and ESRI ArcIMS

2009-05-27 Thread Chris Puttick
And don't forget to talk about the costs of exit. Becoming very popular in IT 
procurement discussions, that one. Openness means very low cost of exit, 
proprietary software licencing businesses are dependent on a high cost of exit.

Proprietary software sales requires evidence of previous sales of snow to 
people living North of Resolute as an entry point to the career ;)

Chris

- Bill Thoen bth...@gisnet.com wrote:

 Thanks for the help folks, especially to John Callahan. That was the 
 best description of the problem with the ESRI solution that I've seen
 to 
 date.  What they offer may be good or not --I don't have the
 experience 
 to argue that point-- but they are even more expensive that I had 
 imagined. I'm very impressed with ESRI's marketing -- if they can sell
 
 this, they could sell snow to Santa Claus!
 
 Regards,
 - Bill Thoen
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] New to the list A question

2009-05-06 Thread Chris Puttick
For what reason are they running ArcSDE? The answer depends on the reason...

Chris

- Andy Kannberg andy.kannb...@gmail.com wrote:

 Hello people,
 
 I am new to the list, and I have subscribed for the following reason:
 I am a linux/unix consultant, currently deployed at a government. At
 this government they use a GIS system, based on Mapserver. Additional
 software is also used, like GDAL, GEOS, ECW, ArcSDE SDK, Xerces-c,
 Oracle Instant client, GD, Proj, Fcgi and Postgis.
 All is running on a RHEL4 system. The idea is to run this all on
 Ubuntu 8.04. I've found all packages to be available on Ubuntu,
 except
 for ArgSDE SDK (Now a part of ArcGIS Server) and ECW, which is from
 Erdas. ArcGIS server is propietary, and is only supported on RedHat
 or
 Suse.
 ECW is a SDK from Erdas (www.ermapper.com), and, apparantly they've
 changed their EULA and it says, it is now allowed to use the ECW SDK
 within Mapserver. (This is second hand info, so please don't shoot me
 if it is not correct.)
 
 So, my actual question is, is there an alternative to ArcGIS and ECW
 ?
 Would appreciate it if someone can shed a light on this, as GIS
 systems are new to me.
 
 cheers,
 
 Andy Kannberg
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Invitation for expressions of interest for Ordnance Survey Think Tank Session on Crowd source data capture, geospatial mashups and its impact on NMAs - 13th July 2009 (Tuesday) a

2009-05-06 Thread Chris Puttick
Surely more than one person in such a debate should be working from the basis 
that charging for geo-spatial data gathered by a publicly funded body is 
missing the point and limiting the opportunity for that data to be exploited in 
a way that maximises value for the wider society?

Just a thought :)

Chris

Free our maps, free our maps...


- Suchith Anand suchith.an...@nottingham.ac.uk wrote:

 Dear All,
 
 The Ordnance Survey has awarded a research contract to the Centre of
 Geospatial Science (CGS) to investigate future data and data
 management
 developments that might impact on Ordnance Survey's operations and
 services.
 
 Please see http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/cgs/projects_os.htmlfor
 more
 details. 
 
 In part fulfilment of this contract we are organising a series of
 Think
 Tank events to explore relevant technology developments and to better
 understand how these developments might influence and impact on
 spatial
 data capture and usage in the future.
 
 The second of Think Tank events is to be held on 13th July 2009
 (Tuesday) at University of Nottingham and will cover the topic of
 Crowd
 sourced data capture, geospatial mashups and its impact on NMAs  
 
 The Think Tank Meeting will a one-day event with 12 experts drawn from
 a
 mix of academic, commercial and industry backgrounds. Selected
 participants may be invited to give brief presentations but in each
 case
 significant time will be allocated for discussion and open
 exploration
 of likely developments and potential consequences.  The participants
 will be divided into four teams (each with 3 members) and will work on
 a
 given challenge. The meeting will operate according to Chatham House
 rules.
 
 Interested participants are invited to submit short position paper
 (max
 2 A4 pages) detailing their potential think tank contribution,
 expectations, vision and research interest, before 30 May 2009 to
 suchith.an...@nottingham.ac.uk  
 
 Travel and accommodation costs of all the selected participants will
 be
 reimbursed. Selection of invited experts will be made by the Ordnance
 Survey.
 
 Think Tank Outcomes
 
 * Identify key research trends and developments in this theme
 * Identify mid-term (2-5 years) and long-term (6-10 years)
 research challenges in this theme
 * Produce report on the Think Tank findings.
 
 Please contact me for any information required.
 
 Best wishes,
 
 Suchith Anand
 
 Dr Suchith Anand
 Centre for Geospatial Science
 Sir Clive Granger Building
 University of Nottingham
 Tel: (0)115 846 8408
 http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/cgs/cgs_suchith_anand.html 
 http://www.opensourcegis.org.uk/ 
 http://ica-opensource.scg.ulaval.ca/ 
 
 
 
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 may still contain software viruses, which could damage your computer
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Liability Issues For Companies Supporting OpenSource Development

2009-04-03 Thread Chris Puttick
And those clauses are modelled on the same sort of disclaimer found in 
old-fashioned closed source software - it was realising that which started me 
as a corporate type towards open source. :)

Chris
- Christopher Schmidt crschm...@crschmidt.net wrote:

 On Thu, Apr 02, 2009 at 11:57:14AM -0700, Landon Blake wrote:
  Frank wrote: Typically open source licenses include disclaimers of
  responsibility, fitness for a purpose, etc.
  
  I was aware that most open source licenses included this type of
  language. My code would be released GPL/LGPL. 
 
 The GPL 'how to use' guide suggests including this text in each file:
 
 This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
 but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
 MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.  See the
 GNU General Public License for more details.
 
 From:
 
  http://www.fsf.org/licensing/licenses/gpl-howto.html
 
 In addition, the license itself includes the text:
 
 IN NO EVENT UNLESS REQUIRED BY APPLICABLE LAW OR AGREED TO IN WRITING
 WILL ANY COPYRIGHT HOLDER, OR ANY OTHER PARTY WHO MODIFIES AND/OR
 CONVEYS THE PROGRAM AS PERMITTED ABOVE, BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR DAMAGES,
 INCLUDING ANY GENERAL, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES
 ARISING OUT OF THE USE OR INABILITY TO USE THE PROGRAM (INCLUDING BUT
 NOT LIMITED TO LOSS OF DATA OR DATA BEING RENDERED INACCURATE OR
 LOSSES
 SUSTAINED BY YOU OR THIRD PARTIES OR A FAILURE OF THE PROGRAM TO
 OPERATE
 WITH ANY OTHER PROGRAMS), EVEN IF SUCH HOLDER OR OTHER PARTY HAS BEEN
 ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.
 
 From http://www.fsf.org/licensing/licenses/gpl.html#howto . 
 
 Both of these seem pretty clear in limiting liability.
 
  I was actually hoping
  there might be a white paper or article that was written to address
  company concerns about open source. I've got a book on developing
 open
  source software. I'll see if it has anything. 
  
  Frank wrote: Were you concerned about some other kind of
 liability?
  
  The concern wasn't mine. It will be a concern of the potential
 sponsor.
  I'm trying to do some research up front so I don't get totally
 stone
  walled by this argument.
  
  Thanks for the help.
  
  Landon
  Office Phone Number: (209) 946-0268
  Cell Phone Number: (209) 992-0658
   
   
  
  -Original Message-
  From: discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org
  [mailto:discuss-boun...@lists.osgeo.org] On Behalf Of Frank
 Warmerdam
  Sent: Thursday, April 02, 2009 11:53 AM
  To: OSGeo Discussions
  Subject: Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Liability Issues For Companies
 Supporting
  OpenSource Development
  
  Landon Blake wrote:
   I'm curious about the type if liability issues a company might
 open 
   itself up to by supporting open source software development. Let
 me
  give 
   you a scenario:
   

   
   A graphic design company decides it will sponsor some development
 of
  the 
   SVG editor Inkscape. It puts out an RFP for the functionality it
 would
  
   like added to the program. It sets up a source code repository
 for
  these 
   changes, hires a company/individual developer to perform the work,
 and
  
   works with the community to integrate the improvements back into
 the 
   main development trunk.
   

   
   What legal liability might this introduce the company to?
   

   
   Is there an article or paper that discusses this question? I'm
 working
  
   on small business support for an open source project, and I know
 one
  of 
   the first objections I will run into is we don't want to be
 liable
  for 
   any programming effort we support financially.
  
  Landon,
  
  Typically open source licenses include disclaimers of
 responsibility,
  fitness for a purpose, etc.  For instance for GDAL:
  
  
  THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED AS IS, WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND,
 EXPRESS
  OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF
  MERCHANTABILITY,
  FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT
 SHALL
  THE AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES
 OR
  OTHER
  LIABILITY, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE,
 ARISING
  FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR OTHER
  DEALINGS IN THE SOFTWARE.
  
  
  This will generally protect the original author or funder of a
 software
  development from liability for damages.  I'd be interested to hear
  of open source developers or their supporters being successfully
  sued when operating with such a disclaimer.
  
  Were you concerned about some other kind of liability?
  
  Best regards,
  -- 
 
 ---+
  --
  I set the clouds in motion - turn up   | Frank Warmerdam,
  warmer...@pobox.com
  light and sound - activate the windows |
 http://pobox.com/~warmerdam
  and watch the world go round - Rush| Geospatial Programmer for
 Rent
  
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Liability Issues For Companies Supporting OpenSource Development

2009-04-03 Thread Chris Puttick
Well, no one. open source, closed source. One guy in Canada or the world's most 
profitable company.

And I quote: 

YOU CANNOT RECOVER ANY OTHER DAMAGES, INCLUDING CONSEQUENTIAL, LOST PROFITS,
SPECIAL, INDIRECT OR INCIDENTAL DAMAGES.
This limitation applies to
·
anything related to the software, services, content (including code) on
third party Internet sites, or third party programs; and
·
claims for breach of contract, breach of warranty, guarantee or condition,
strict liability, negligence, or other tort to the extent permitted by
applicable law.
It also applies even if
·
repair, replacement or a refund for the software does not fully compensate
you for any losses; or
·
Microsoft knew or should have known about the possibility of the damages.
Some states do not allow the exclusion or limitation of incidental or
consequential damages, so the above limitation or exclusion may not apply to 
you.
They also may not apply to you because your country may not allow the exclusion
or limitation of incidental, consequential or other damages. (c) Microsoft, 
from the Office 2007 Standard edition licence. 

The warranty section is even more fun. For those who doubt (read those who 
never read the licence they are agreeing to), this useful site should help 
them:

http://www.microsoft.com/about/legal/useterms/default.aspx

Where I got my copy of the licence from, having never been able to install 
MSO2k7 on my computers :)

Chris


- nicholas g lawrence nicholas.g.lawre...@mainroads.qld.gov.au wrote:

  And those clauses are modelled on the same sort of disclaimer found
  in old-fashioned closed source software - it was realising that
  which started me as a corporate type towards open source. :)
 
 When I bring up open source in my workplace, the usual
 criticism is who can I sue when things go wrong?
 
 There is a perception that if commercial proprietary software
 breaks, you can sue the supplier.
 
 nick
 
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Transition fromGMaps to Open Source

2009-03-28 Thread Chris Puttick

- strk s...@keybit.net wrote:

 On Fri, Mar 27, 2009 at 03:53:05PM -0500, Arnie Shore wrote:
  Folks, hello, and I wonder if anyone can share experiences doing
 such
  a transition.  (I've tried this question with the OpenLayers groups
  without response but it was suggested that this group might help.)
  
  Background:  I've written a free, Open Source Computer-Aided
 Dispatch
  application targeted to the public safety community, notably ham
 radio
  groups who kick into gear during emergency/crisis conditions.  It
  relies on GMaps API and imagery currently.
  
  But under emergency conditions which comprise the reasons for this
  community's existence, internet connectivity to Google  may not
 exist
  of course.  Accordingly, I'm planning a version of the app in which
  the tile sets and API are resident at a local server.  Hence my
 strong
  interest in open solutions.
  
  I can't imagine I'm the only one here doing anything like that, so
  I'll appreciate hearing re experiences doing this, plus,
 especially,
  thoughts on the tile sets available.  Thanks, all.
 
 Have you considered getting data from the Open Street Map [1] database
 ?
 Freedom for geographical data is unfortunately behind the one for
 geographical software, OSM is in my opinion the best attempt at
 making
 this more balanced. It won't provide photos though, only vectorial
 data.
 There are tools to import those data in a postgis database, for later
 processing/georeferencing. There are also a few specialized renderers
 which you could use to generate static tiles, if all you need is
 images.
 
 [1] http://www.openstreetmap.org
 

And if you need some imagery, Worldwind seems to have access to some, as well 
as some really neat tools:

http://worldwind.arc.nasa.gov/java/demos/

Chris


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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] RE: [Geowanking] Apple patents dynamic presention of location-specific information

2009-03-10 Thread Chris Puttick
I believe the appropriate term in reference to this patent is prior art - not 
only has similar and more advanced technology been described by science fiction 
authors for decades, but there are the wireless devices used in a number of 
museums which provide information about the exhibit you are near to. Then 
again, conceptually, it is clearly a minor variant on points of interests on 
maps and therefore covers all mobile GPS devices. I think people in Apple are 
being targeted to submit patent applications.

If this one doesn't fail in the US patent system I will personally fight it to 
the death before it gets accepted in Europe...

Chris

- Landon Blake lbl...@ksninc.com wrote:

 My favorite line from the patent application: 
 
 The many features and advantages of the present invention are
 apparent
 from the written description. Further, since numerous modifications
 and
 changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, the invention
 should not be limited to the exact construction and operation as
 illustrated and described. Hence, all suitable modifications and
 equivalents may be resorted to as falling within the scope of the
 invention.
 
 It sounds like there are talking about some pretty fundamental ideas
 in
 the patent. Still, this is a rather cutting edge area of technology,
 so
 maybe this hasn't been done before?
 
 Still, it sounds like trying to patent the first drive-through
 restaurant. Don't know that there is a huge amount of innovation
 going
 on here.
 
 I'd think other companies interested in mobile applications (like
 Google
 and Microsoft) would be all over this patent application.
 
 Landon
 Office Phone Number: (209) 946-0268
 Cell Phone Number: (209) 992-0658
  
  
 
 -Original Message-
 From: geowanking-boun...@geowanking.org
 [mailto:geowanking-boun...@geowanking.org] On Behalf Of Mike Liebhold
 Sent: Friday, March 06, 2009 2:43 PM
 To: geowank...@geowanking.org
 Subject: [Geowanking] Apple patents dynamic presention of
 location-specific information 
 
 Hmmm - this demands closer inspection.
 
 
 United States Patent Application 20090063293, entitled Dynamic 
 Presentation of Location-Specific Information, seeks to patent
 improved
 
 approaches to allow a portable electronic device to dynamically
 present 
 location-specific information while the portable electronic device is
 at
 
 a predetermined location... In one embodiment, the portable electronic
 
 device has a display that can display the location-specific
 information 
 and has wireless capabilities for use in receiving the
 location-specific
 
 information from the server. The location-specific information can,
 for 
 example, augment other information that is to be presented on the 
 display. In one embodiment, the location-specific information can be 
 information pertaining to a media item being played in an
 establishment,
 
 such as a store, where the portable electronic device is located.
 
 [ full patent text here: http://bit.ly/wYHme ]
 
 comments?
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Mobile mapping with GPS

2009-02-01 Thread Chris Puttick
I think you could achieve this with an openmoko, TangoGPS and gvSIG - no laptop 
required. Which if you're really going to be pedalling sounds a better option 
than a laptop.

Cycle tested: http://blogs.thehumanjourney.net/finds/entry/20080826

And a keyboard option: http://blogs.thehumanjourney.net/finds/entry/20080716

Regards

Chris

- RAVI KUMAR ravivundava...@yahoo.com wrote:

 Hi,
 need an online (live) input from GPS into GIS.
 Wish to map state of roads in a town, 
 1. pedaling all along with a laptop connected to a GPS.
 2. Take notes at bad stretches of roads by keying attribute
 information.
 3. Want the GIS data ready after the field work for upload into a
 server.
 
 Have tried some that, could use only for Off-Line data
 input into GIS, that is 
  a. Go around with the GPS, collect data and scribble
 notes
  b. Connect GPS to GIS and download data, and add
 attribute 
 information scribbled earlier.
 ThanQ in anticipation
 
 Ravi Kumar
 
 
   
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] copyright question

2008-12-09 Thread Chris Puttick

- P Kishor [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:

 On Tue, Dec 9, 2008 at 1:52 PM, Bart van den Eijnden (OSGIS)
 [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
  So if the project had been formed, but does not contain any source
 code as
  yet it's possible? Or am I misinterpreting your words?
 
 Well, it is entirely possible that I am misinterpreting your words. I
 am not sure what is a project as different from the code? How can
 there be a project if there is no code? Besides, a project is not
 copyrighted... it is the code that is copyrighted, and that is done
 by
 considering software source code as a literary work actually.
 
 If projects without code could be copyrighted then every joe the
 plumber would dream up of all kinds of fanciful projects that only
 exist in ones mind, and copyright them. Then everyone else would be
 shut out.
 
 A clever lawyer could also argue that the project is an idea, while
 the code is the expression of that idea. Since ideas can't be
 copyrighted, there you go. Consider this example -- I have this
 wonderful idea that given an address, the computer should be able to
 figure out the lat/lon. I call this project by the name geocoding
 and copyright it even though I haven't written a lick of code. Now
 everyone else is shut out from writing computer programs to do
 geocoding. That wouldn't be nice, would it?
 
I believe in the US that is known as a patent ;)

Chris


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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Can we use a LiveDVD for workshops and labs at FOSS4G 2009?

2008-10-20 Thread Chris Puttick

- Daniel P. Ames [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 Hi folks.  As you all know, there is a growing interest in open source
 for Windows. Especially with Microsoft's release of its developer
 tools in free express editions and the availability of such tools as
 SharpDevelop and Mono.  
 
 MapWindow is .NET based and the bulk of our developers and users are
 strictly MS based.  I don't think this makes them any less human, it
 just says that their threshold for open source is set such that a $90
 Windows operating system is considered acceptable but a $1 GIS is
 not.  

But to split hairs, if MapWindow is .NET based it is not entirely open source 
as it is dependent on a closed source platform. Now if it also works on Mono 
(as in developed with that in mind), that's no longer true. Does it? I would 
also suggest that developing an open source project inside an environment 
controlled by one of the companies most damaged if the open source development 
model becomes the norm is inviting failure.

OTOH I would be a supporter of having Windows available on the LiveDVD in 
VirtualBox, partly for reasons you suggest below and partly so Linux avoiders 
can realise you can also gain from avoiding that $90 tax on your PC. The use of 
Windows in VirtualBox should be legitimate if the host machines have licences. 
Legitimate as in defendable at least; not sure how pragmatic Australian courts 
are on software licencing and some of the more ridiculous terms companies 
include in them...

NB would require two versions of the DVD as it could not be distributed 
including the Windows VM. And come to think of it, given Window's special size 
requirements as an OS, it would probably require a Bluray disc instead of a DVD 
;)

Chris

 
 We had a great turnout at the MapWindow lab and worshop in South
 Africa and got lots of hey it's great to see .NET open source GIS
 here comments.  So, call us mudbloods, but it's an approach that we
 see has a huge added value for lots of folks.  Bottom line, if having
 Windows on some lab computers doesn't add a huge expense, then we'd
 hope that Windows based labs and/or workshops would be encouraged.
 
 Indeed, consider the opportunities for demonstrating QGIS and GRASS
 and others on Windows to help convert Linux avoiders over to OSGeo.
 
 - Dan
 
 -Original Message-
 From: Dave Patton [EMAIL PROTECTED]
 Sent: Sunday, October 19, 2008 3:02 PM
 To: OSGeo Discussions discuss@lists.osgeo.org
 Subject: Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Can we use a LiveDVD for workshops and
 labs at FOSS4G 2009?vel
 
 On 2008/10/19 1:30 PM, Cameron Shorter wrote:
  I'm wondering whether it will be achievable and desirable to use a 
  GeoFOSS LiveDVD as the only installed operating system at workshops
  and labs at FOSS4G 2009.
 
  So my questions to communities are:
  
  Do you and your project think you would commit to packaging your
  project into a debian based LiveDVD before FOSS4G in October 2009?
  
  For presenters, would you want to add tutorial material to the
  LiveDVD, which would mean using an Open licence like Creative
  Commons?
 
 I would start by asking a different question - does anyone
 foresee any issue with not having MS Windows available as
 an option for Workshops/Labs for FOSS4G 2009?
 
 We might not want to restrict the discussion to OSGeo projects.
 What if a Sponsor, or Exhibitor, or 'some software company', or
 'some non-OSGeo project' submitted a proposal to deliver a
 Workshop/Lab, and it merited consideration for inclusion in the
 conference, but it required MS Windows?
 
 Were there Workshops/Labs at FOSS4G 2008 that could not have
 been delivered without having MS Windows?
 
 If we assume that there was 'some need' for MS Windows for
 FOSS4G 2009, but that it wasn't needed for all the PCs,
 how would people react to Workshops/Labs that required
 MS Windows also requiring a higher registration fee?
 (i.e. higher by the incremental cost of the license to
 use MS Windows on the PC for the Workshop/Lab)
 
 
 P.S.
 It helps if everyone uses the term Instructors when
 referring to Workshops/Labs, because Presenter makes
 people think of Presentations, and sometimes that
 causes confusion.
 
 -- 
 Dave Patton
 CIS Canadian Information Systems
 Victoria, B.C.
 
 Degree Confluence Project:
 Canadian Coordinator
 Technical Coordinator
 http://www.confluence.org/
 
 OSGeo FOSS4G2007 conference:
 Workshop Committee Chair
 Conference Committee member
 http://www.foss4g2007.org/
 
 Personal website:
 Maps, GPS, etc.
 http://members.shaw.ca/davepatton/
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Can we use a LiveDVD for workshops and labs at FOSS4G 2009?

2008-10-20 Thread Chris Puttick

- Christopher Schmidt [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 On Mon, Oct 20, 2008 at 07:25:01AM +0100, Chris Puttick wrote:
  
  - Daniel P. Ames [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
   Hi folks.  As you all know, there is a growing interest in open
 source
   for Windows. Especially with Microsoft's release of its developer
   tools in free express editions and the availability of such
 tools as
   SharpDevelop and Mono.  
   
   MapWindow is .NET based and the bulk of our developers and users
 are
   strictly MS based.  I don't think this makes them any less human,
 it
   just says that their threshold for open source is set such that a
 $90
   Windows operating system is considered acceptable but a $1 GIS
 is
   not.  
  
  But to split hairs, if MapWindow is .NET based it is not entirely
 open
  source as it is dependent on a closed source platform. 
 
 That's like saying OpenLayers is not open source when used with
 Google
 Maps -- OpenLayers (and correspondingly, MapWindow) is (or can be)
 still Open Source, regardless of the libraries it depends on. Let's
 not
 play the My software is more open than your software game; Stallman
 is
 good enough at that. 

No, it isn't the same at all. Building an open source application on a bunch of 
proprietary libraries makes the resulting application very closed to anyone 
without access to those closed libraries and potentially removes the one of the 
key advantages of open source, i.e. the ability to fix a bug you uncover. OTOH 
using OpenLayers with Google Maps is just about choice of data sources. 
OpenLayers is not restricted to using Google Maps, that is just how you 
implement it.

And MapWindow is far more open than my software as I don't have any :)

 Regards,
 -- 
 Christopher Schmidt
 Web Developer
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Resource viewer for grama panchayat

2008-08-23 Thread Chris Puttick
Displays just fine in my email client. I don't recognise the particular Indic 
script but having international contacts means I have every font pack going 
installed.

Chris

- RAVI KUMAR [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
Hi,
one more thing..
Your name is shown as '' in email which may prompt users
to SPAM it. Pl correct this.
Ravi

--- On Sat, 8/23/08, നെടുമ്പാല ജയ്സെന്‍ [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:

From: നെടുമ്പാല ജയ്സെന്‍ [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Subject: [OSGeo-Discuss] Resource viewer for grama panchayat
To: discuss@lists.osgeo.org
Date: Saturday, August 23, 2008, 1:11 AM

Hai,
Let me introduce my work to the list:-
 
http://cheruvannur.web4all.in/resources/
 
Hope, I can hear valuable suggestions.
 
It is hosted on a Debian GNU/Linux Etch server. It was my main project 
during my M.Sc. course in last semester, and I decided to do this because I 
wanted to do something useful for the panchayat - my first employer :) 
(Panchayats are the rural local authorities in India, just like Municipalities 
- the urban thing.) My course is just finished.
 
I developed this thing, on a Debian GNU/Linux Etch system using GRASS GIS, 
PostgreSQL with PostGIS, Quantum GIS, UMN MapServer, ka-Map etc. Coded in 
MapScript and php. All are Free/Open Source things.
 
I want to expand this to the entire district with some added query modules, 
such as shortest route to a place, maximum coverage for some areas, flood risk 
analysis etc, to make it a complete plan-development support system.
 
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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Thematic Mapping Engine as Open Source?

2008-06-24 Thread Chris Puttick

- Lester Caine [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 Christopher Schmidt wrote:
  On Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 05:40:41PM +0200, Paolo Cavallini wrote:
  Bjorn Sandvik ha scritto:
 
  I'll consider the pros and cons between different licenses. I
 don't have
  commercial interests,
  but I would like the project to be sustainable.
 
  I've changed my mind about using SourceForge, - I agree that
 Google Code
  is more suitable.
  Please note:
  - GPL is more widely used
  
  Than what?
  
  In any case, GPL is designed to prevent use of the software in a
  specific set of contexts. I maintain my position that for
 Javascript
  Libraries, the GPL is confusing at best, and tends to hurt uptake of
 
  an open source project, in my experience. (ExtJS is a strong
 counter
  example of a JS library which is GPL licensed -- but they are not
 an
  open source project, just open source code.) 
  
  The GPL is a fine license for many things, I just think that open
 souce
  Javascript Libraries isn't among them.
 
 GPL is appropriate if you do not want other people to make money out
 of your 
 effort. LGPL may be more appropriate for Libraries but only after
 reading 
 http://www.gnu.org/licenses/why-not-lgpl.html
 
Surely you mean people not making money out of selling your efforts without 
making a contribution back? Plenty of people make money from selling services 
around GPL software without breaching the licence and I don't think many of 
those developing GPL software begrudge that.

Chris



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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Thematic Mapping Engine as Open Source?

2008-06-24 Thread Chris Puttick

- Christopher Schmidt [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 On Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 02:01:17PM +0200, Arnulf Christl wrote:
  Just as a side note: Google has been overly submissive to US Export
 
  Regulations and rejects requests from IPs that can be traced to a
 location 
  within an country that falls under their export ban list.
 Unfortunately the 
  same applies to SourceForge. 
  Thus publishing your project through Google Code or SourceForge
 effectively 
  prevents interested folks from joining the project if they are
 citizen of a 
  nation that falls under the US Export Regulations. This also applies
 to 
  people only visiting such countries. 
 
 Is there some other easy option here? Hosting your own is fscking
 painful, OSGeo doesn't offer hosting for small projects like this, and
 I
 expect anyone else who is big enough to make solving this problem
 easy
 likely isn't in a position to be much more open/unrestricted, because
 they're governed by the same laws.
 

Launchpad?

Chris



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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Re: Sign the Hague declaration

2008-05-15 Thread Chris Puttick

- James Fee [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 -Original Message-
 From: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
 [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED] On Behalf Of Benjamin
 Henrion
 Sent: Wednesday, May 14, 2008 1:56 PM
 To: OSGeo Discussions
 Subject: Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Re: Sign the Hague declaration
 
 And force its citizens to buy a copy of proprietary software, or to
 use
 special software.
 
 When it comes to contact with citizens, governments could exclude
 participation of their own citizens just by using proprietary
 standards.
 
 Sounds like you want to force and exclude as well.
 
I'm sorry. In what way does requiring digital information to be in an open 
standard force or exclude anyone? Be very sure those companies desperately 
resisting the development and/or support of digital standards would provide 
support for government mandated ones really, really fast. Let's take the 
example of mandating OpenDocument Format. There you are, either moderately 
well-off or using an illegal copy of Microsoft Office and suddenly you would be 
unable to read/write documents provided by government bodies. So sure, in the 
interim you might be forced to download one of several free (as in beer, some 
free as in libre) applications to access those documents. Terrible imposition, 
my apologies. This is somehow worse than being forced to either have second 
rate access because you have too old a copy of Microsoft Office, use an 
operating system for which Microsoft Office is not available or choose not to 
break the law by using illegal copies of software?

IT only does not have a complete set of open digital standards because it is so 
immature. Every area of life is made accessible and cost-effective because of 
standards. The only people who do not benefit in the short-term by forcing 
standards on an area are the dominant manufacturers supplying said area. Where 
do you buy your fuel for your car/motorbike? Which manufacturer supplies your 
tyres? Where are you forced to get it serviced? Does your fridge manufacturer 
also supplies the electric sockets in your house? And the electricity?

We have open standards for networking, which has been useful; open standards 
for the web, which some suggest is why the web exists at all; open (some 
belatedly!) standards for digital images (a mere convenience). WFS/WMS not been 
useful for you? Why object to open standards for other file formats?

Chris


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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Re: Sign the Hague declaration

2008-05-15 Thread Chris Puttick

- P Kishor [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 
   But disagree there. Switching from M$ documents to 'real' open
 source
  documents and dropping licensed graphical data in favour of OSM and
 other
  free map data opens the door to 'Standardising' on something that we
 can all
  cooperate on.
 
 It still is not clear what the something is... are you advocating a
 standard for a license or a standard for a format? Are you talking
 about standards in office-productivity applications (word-processing,
 spreadsheet, presentation software) or in databases (should we
 boycott
 everyone who uses Oracle and Ingres?) or remote sensing (does IDL go
 out the window?) or medical imaging or audio or video or ... you get
 the picture. Let me repeat my question.
 
 Standard for what?
 
 

Standards for everything that matters.

A physical example: in the UK we have a standard for electrical plugs and 
sockets and for the supply. This means that I can buy a lamp or a fridge I can 
be sure it will be able to plug in to my electrical socket and just work and I 
don't risk death by using it.

It is my choice to have switched sockets or unswitched. The plug can be black 
or white or chrome (hopefully not chrome...); it can be rubberised and curvy or 
hard plastic and square. The sockets can be sunk into the wall or surface 
mounted or in trunking and also any colour/material (mine are black nickel, 
which is nice without being too much, but I digress...). It doesn't matter i.e. 
these factors are not part of standard, because what matters is that the socket 
has 3 specifically sized rectangular pins, positioned just so, with the right 
pin live and fused appropriately, the left pin neutral and the top pin earth. 
The socket needs to have the equivalent sized and placed holes and wired 
appropriately and if switched the switch needs to meet certain specifications. 
The UK electrical supply is legally required to be 50Hz AC at 230V +/- 10%

That's it. That's the bits that need to be standardised. And not only are 
supply and sockets and plugs standardised but mandated to be so. This means I 
can buy my sockets from whomever made by whomever and my plugs are sourced by 
the manufacturers of my electrical equipment from whomever. Bring it all 
together with my power supply from yet another supplier and it all works fine.

SQL already is a standard (the openness of it let's debate another day). A 
well-behaved (R/O)DBMS responds more or less the same way to an SQL query as 
the others. This has been a useful evolution of databases, reflecting their 
relative age. But we do not have standards in many areas of digital life where 
it would be important, or where the standards exist, they are not being 
mandated and therefore are not being adopted. 

So the shortish answer to your question: standards for the digital plugs and 
sockets and standards for the digital power supply. The plugs and sockets are 
the APIs and the protocols; lots of that is already sorted. The digital power 
supply is the information that flows, the stuff that is important in this 
information age we are entering. It is there we are short of standards. I don't 
want to dictate to anyone what software they should use. I do think I should be 
able to demand that they provide information in a standardised format and this 
not be an issue because they don't have a specific software package. Where 
there are no available standards we have to be pragmatic initially, but we must 
move, with some urgency, towards a position where there are standards for those 
interchanges i.e. develop them either from existing formats or by starting 
clean.

It's not about control or restrictions, its about real choice. You get to 
choose which applications you use for which jobs and do so without concerns 
about operating systems or the applications being used by your client or other 
stakeholders, because the information will flow as a standard all can read 
without issue.

As to why governments first? Another long answer for another time...

Chris


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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Re: Sign the Hague declaration

2008-05-15 Thread Chris Puttick

- P Kishor [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 On 5/15/08, Chris Puttick [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 
   - P Kishor [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:


 
  Standards for everything that matters.
 
 Chris,
 
 You are conflating a whole boatload of things here, and everything
 that matters is about the biggest boatload there can be.
 
 
   A physical example: in the UK we have a standard for electrical
 plugs and sockets and for the supply. This means that I can buy a lamp
 or a fridge I can be sure it will be able to plug in to my electrical
 socket and just work and I don't risk death by using it.
 
 And, when I travel from the US to the UK, I am sol unless I carry a
 driver or a translator that allows me to connect my appliance to
 the UK grid.

Yes, exactly. And your translator might be big and expensive, if for example, 
you moved here and brought your white goods with you. I have a US-market 
breadmaker which needs 700W at 110v; that needs a significant transformer, not 
just a simple shape-shift. But in the end home electrical needs are simple and 
the differences between the different plug standards well documented, because 
all are standardised in their home countries. Is there a country where there 
isn't a standard plug/socket/supply?

 
 What was the standard here? I didn't force UK to change to 110 v and
 to flat pins. I just went to the market and bought a translator.

Ok, go to market and buy a translator that works between a whole bunch of 
voltages and all plugs (do include the Swiss one...) for any domestic appliance 
e.g. a vacuum cleaner at 1.2kW as well as your laptop, mobile and MP3 player. 
Then do that for undocumented, unstandardised binary data formats.

 
snip
 
   SQL already is a standard (the openness of it let's debate another
 day). A well-behaved (R/O)DBMS responds more or less the same way to
 an SQL query as the others. This has been a useful evolution of
 databases, reflecting their relative age. But we do not have standards
 in many areas of digital life where it would be important, or where
 the standards exist, they are not being mandated and therefore are not
 being adopted.
 
 SQL is not a data storage format. SQL is a query standard, and a
 fairly malleable one.

Yes, but it is a standard. How the (R/O)DBMS stores the data is neither here 
nor there if the query is well-formed and response appropriate. The standard 
for databases is not the storage format but the query language and response. 
Compliance with one of the SQL standards is commonly de riguer in government 
projects with databases.

 
 Are you talking about data storage formats or about query standards?

Standards. For the digital world. For file formats, for query languages, for 
APIs, for wikis.
 
 
   So the shortish answer to your question: standards for the digital
 plugs and sockets and standards for the digital power supply. The
 plugs and sockets are the APIs and the protocols; lots of that is
 already sorted. The digital power supply is the information that
 flows, the stuff that is important in this information age we are
 entering. It is there we are short of standards. I don't want to
 dictate to anyone what software they should use. I do think I should
 be able to demand that they provide information in a standardised
 format and this not be an issue because they don't have a specific
 software package. Where there are no available standards we have to be
 pragmatic initially, but we must move, with some urgency, towards a
 position where there are standards for those interchanges i.e. develop
 them either from existing formats or by starting clean.
 
 
 
 My shortish reply is that there is no shortish reply. I am with you
 with regards to the sentiment. But I am convinced that the
 digistan/Hague declaration is not the way to go about doing so.
 
 We've had a lot of discussion about standards on OSGeo lists as well
 as on Geowanking lists. Some of that discussion merits re-reading.
 
 Some are born standards (Shapefiles, by virtue of first-entry as well
 as subsequent ubiquity)

Shapefiles are not a standards until they are documented and in the control of 
a neutral party. Wait until ESRI switch to shapeb, the new binary default file 
format... Shapefiles are however a good starting point for a standard for 
storing that type of digital information as they are at least clear and 
well-understood. I'm told there was also a GIS project file format that was 
similarly easy to understand.

, some achieve standards (OGC-type standards
 by
 discussion and committee), and others have standards thrust upon them
 (big agencies using MS-Word or ArcGIS).

You confuse common ways of doing things with standards. MS Word and ArcGIS are 
not standards, just dominant players in their field. It is not appropriate that 
specific software is needed to interoperate with information created in those 
applications.

OGC makes standards. They are a fairly typical standards consortium composed 
primarily of companies