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Integrating Oracle Spatial with Google Earth

Some of you may have noticed that one of my most recent entries to the Oracle-geospatial sphere took the form of an Oracle Technology Network paper titled Integrating Oracle Spatial with Google Earth. So far this paper has received a lot of attention and interesting commentary. With that in mind I received an email from Chris Holmes, who works on GeoServer. Chris pointed out a few corrections and additions that should be made to the paper.

1. First and foremost, "GeoServer is just GeoServer, not 'Confluence GeoServer'. Confluence is actually the name of [the] wiki software, so has pretty much nothing to do with GeoServer."

2.The most recent release of GeoServer (1.5.2) includes a bunch of KML improvements such as templated description output for placemarks, super overlays, legend overlays and time support. See http://docs.codehaus.org/display/GEOSDOC/Google+Earth for more info.

3.With respect to Oracle queries and transactions, the 1.5.2 release of GeoServer also includes fixes and performance-boosting improvements - which I absolutely noticed while performing Google Earth network link refreshes of the Oracle theme I added - as well as support for transactions (inserts, updates, etc.).

Probably one of the coolest and easiest updates you can make to your Oracle Spatial/Google Earth implementation, per the newest edition of GeoServer, is to add custom Placemark Templates - http://docs.codehaus.org/display/GEOSDOC/01-Placemark+Templates. As I've done here, you too can create interesting information popup boxes with all kinds of GREAT information based on whatever you feel is relevant. Using my custom placemark template, my new Oracle Spatial/Google Earth dataset now uses the following for popups:

Figure 1- Custom placemark popup window

Figure 2 - Opened custom link in Google Earth embedded browser

Finally, while working on this paper I stayed in close contact with the Oracle Spatial group and in one way or another helped them to focus on what people really want from Oracle Spatial when it comes to interfaces like Google Earth: people want simplicity. As such, in the VERY near future you will more than likely see a release of Oracle Spatial, Oracle MapViewer or a related tool that will include the ability to automagically output themes and maps as KML (or KMZ). One of the best parts about this kind of offering would be that one could utilize Oracle's analytic capabilities to the fullest extent and expose these analytics to a rich front end without writing a bunch of code. I think most would agree that this would greatly enhance this powerful business offering.

Posted by justin.lokitz at 02:05 PM | Comments (0)



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