Open Source Computing and GIS in the UK

Travels in a digital world

Open Source, OpenSpaces and Other Things

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Time for another round-up…

  • The Ordnance Survey have revised the terms and conditions of using their OpenSpaces mapping API (via Mapperz), which is a step in the right direction, since they now allow adverts on your site. There’s still a daily limit to the number of views/address lookups that you can do too. However, there are a couple of points that need mentioning/clarifying… firstly there’s a strange condition that you can’t use this for “internal business administration”. Not sure what that really means, but I assume it’s so you don’t stick it behind a firewall and stop OS counting your number of page views or something. Furthermore, there’s nothing obvious on the site about whether you need a license to use the data still, in which case it’s still a show-stopper. I’ve emailed them for clarification about that, so watch this space…

  • Tyler Mitchell has an article in Direction Magazine about “Reassuring End Users of Open Source”.¬† I’m uneasy about the term “Reassuring”, as it has slightly negative connotations (“don’t worry!”, “worry, who said anything about worrying?”), but the article is well worth a read with some useful comments on the advantage of open source for businesses and the role of OSGeo.

  • No doubt everyone already knows about the OpenGeo Architecture White Paper. Personally I think it’s another good paper to have around and quote from (or steal slides from) when trying to convince people that using open source geospatial software¬† is a more flexible and all round sensible approach to your geospatial stack.

  • OStatic have an article about Open Source software at NASA. Not so much geospatial stuff going on there, but it’s good to see the top two reasons why NASA go for Open Source:

To increase NASA software quality via community peer review

To accelerate software development via community contributions

It’s good to see “quality” as an argument for choosing Open Source, rather than “saving money”!

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