IndianaMap

Local Government GIS Coordinator Forum

IndianaMap Questions

Rick Hill, Indiana Geological Survey
Anna Radue, Indiana University � UITS

Question 1: What is a Web Feature Service and how is it being used?
Question 2: Is there going to be a more friendly way of using the state map site?
Question 3: Some groups have no infrastructure, so if a dataset can be created to support a state organization or group, will the IndianaMap host their data?
Question 4: Can IHAPI (Indiana Historical Aerial Photo Index) be streamed into ArcGIS using WMS/WFS?
Question 5: What additional map services are being considered with the IndianaMap?
Question 6: Could the IndianaMap and its WMS’s get mashed up with Google Earth and Microsoft Bing maps?
Question 7: What is the process for adding data to the IndianaMap?
Question 8: How is the IndianaMap being used to support The National Map and the National Spatial Data Infrastructure?
Question 9: All of the people (3 so far) I have sent to the UITS to download orthophotography have called back to say it’s not working or too slow. What could be a possible solution for these customers?
Question 10: How can I find out how to submit my county’s GIS data to the IndianaMap?

Answers

Question 1: What is a Web Feature Service and how is it being used?

A: There are two common types of web mapping services: Web Map Services (WMS) and Web Feature Services (WFS). WMS produces a static image that is downloaded into the user’s desktop software. No editing of the symbology or spatial analysis (such as clipping or contouring) is possible. Examples include Google Earth, the IndianaMap, and the seven IndianaMap Framework services. In contrast, WFS permits the user to interact with GIS data residing on a remote server, allowing them to utilize a variety of desktop GIS tools.


Question 2: Is there going to be a more friendly way of using the state map site?

A: Every attempt has been made to make the site as user-friendly as possible. Standard GIS tools are used, narrated video tutorials are available, and individual requests for assistance are answered promptly. However, given the large number of data layers (more than 230) and GIS tools (more than 30) that are included on the site in order to serve the widest possible audience, the site has a certain basic level of complexity. We continue to consider improvements that can be made, but there is currently no permanent source of funding to implement any extensive re-designs.


Question 3: Some groups have no infrastructure, so if a dataset can be created to support a State organization or group, will the IndianaMap host their data?

A: Yes. If a statewide or regional dataset (with metadata) is made publicly available, it will be considered for inclusion on the IndianaMap.


Question 4: Can IHAPI (Indiana Historical Aerial Photo Index) be streamed into ArcGIS using WMS/WFS?

A: No, because the two data layers that are used by IHAPI are not structured for use in desktop GIS software.


Question 5: What additional map services are being considered with the IndianaMap?

A: See answer to next question. Additionally, we have considered using KML, Flex, Silverlight, and WFS services. However, KML and WFS are probably not appropriate for the IndianaMap Atlas because of its size and complexity. However, we are still considering possible future conversion of the IndianaMap to Flex and Silverlight, pending adoption of ArcGIS server technology. The seven IndianaMap Framework services will be available as WFS services in the near future.


Question 6: Could the IndianaMap and its WMS’s get mashed up with Google Earth and Microsoft Bing maps?

A1: UITS is working with the Indiana Department of Homeland Security to create map caches of the most recent Indiana orthophotography. These new ArcGIS Server mapping services are in development. The caches will have the same projection and scales as Google and Bing to support mashups.

A2: The Indiana Geological Survey is also looking into these possibilities. However, such mashups may not be appropriate because of the size and complexity of the complete IndianaMap.

A3: IGIC is working with ESRI’s Flex API to develop custom Theme based mashups from the data available in the IndianaMap. These mashups will not replace the full IndianaMap, but will provide thematic map views of various data layers to provide information about flood events, home foreclosures, brownfields, economic development, etc.


Question 7: What is the process for adding data to the IndianaMap?

A: Potential contributors to the IndianaMap should contact Phil Worrall, who will pass the request to the IndianaMap Steering Committee for consideration. If recommended for inclusion, the dataset (together with FGDC-compliant metadata) will be provided to the Indiana Geological Survey, who will submit the dataset and metadata for review. Following completion of revisions, if needed, the dataset will be posted on the IndianaMap during the next regularly scheduled update (which occur on the first Tuesday of each month).


Question 8: How is the IndianaMap being used to support The National Map and the National Spatial Data Infrastructure?

A: Geospatial One Stop (GOS) harvests metadata information once a week from the IndianaMap and automatically provides this information to The National Map. This could be improved, a task Jim Sparks, Indiana GIO, is working on. The best data is local data and funding must begin here.


Question 9: All of the people (3 so far) I have sent to the UITS to download orthophotography have called back to say it’s not working or too slow. What could be a possible solution for these customers?

A: At the beginning of the semester UITS had an issue with the two Apache web servers. UITS is working to move these servers to new hardware which should improve the download availability. Here are Knowledge Base articles that may provide more information: http://kb.iu.edu/data/aufr.html and http://kb.iu.edu/data/atxb.html.

Another issue is size of the download. The customer’s bandwidth usually determines the download process, and these are very large images. As an alternative, users can always contact the dataset owner and request the data. The UITS site has web pages describing each dataset and the contacts. Finally, the downloading may be easier from your home than business. It just depends on network traffic.

Also, please keep in mind these services are not supported by any funding, but we do our best. UITS’s staff contact email is readily available. We always respond to user emails and work to find a resolution!


Question 10: How can I find out how to submit my County’s GIS data to the IndianaMap?

A: Potential contributors to the IndianaMap should contact Phil Worrall (pworrall@igic.org), who will pass the request to the IndianaMap Steering Committee for consideration. If recommended for inclusion, the dataset (together with FGDC-compliant metadata) will be provided to the Indiana Geological Survey, who will submit the dataset and metadata for review. Following completion of revisions, if needed, the dataset will be posted on the IndianaMap Atlas during the next regularly scheduled update (which occur on the first Tuesday of each month).