This week from Monday through to Sunday you’ll find us at the Digital Shoreditch festival, an event that attracts hundreds of speakers from the most innovative and successful companies and organisations across creative, technical, start-up tech and digital spaces and beyond. During the week, we’ll be exhibiting, speaking and promoting our digital products and services amongst some of Tech City’s most talented digital and technical creative individuals.
The festival has a different theme each day, comprising of panel sessions, key note speeches and discussions – kicking off with today’s “What Tech City” theme. During the day, festival goers will collectively explore the many companies and organisations that make Tech City what it is, focusing on developing new ways to exploit the potential for growing global engagement and improving our digital economy and society.
Continue reading 'Digital Shoreditch festival 2013 – hear how we’re involved!'»
There’s only a week left to enter Ordnance Survey’s current GeoVation Challenge in which we’re offering a share of £100,000 in funding for the best ideas to help business to improve environmental performance and our Geovation Team have been busy spreading the word amongst the developer and entrepreneurial community.
On Monday night the GeoVation team were at the Google Campus for a Dreamstake Founders event to promote the latest challenge to the entrepreneur community. The Dreamstake Academy consists of a series of workshops which focus on the fundamentals of launching and building a startup and Monday night was part of their series of ‘Learn from Founders’ Startup Stories evenings in which presents an opportunity for new start-ups to learn how to create a successful startup and avoid the obvious mistakes.
The evening kicked off at 6.30pm as Chris Parker of the GeoVation Team delivered a keynote presentation on GeoVation and the role of geography in innovation. Chris explained how GeoVation challenges are focussed on finding innovative and useful ways of using geographic information, including open data and tools, to build new ventures that will generate social, economic and environmental benefit. He introduced our latest GeoVation Challenge, ‘How can we help British Business improve environmental performance? which is calling for innovative ideas that address the identified problems using geography, technology and design. The challenge runs to 1 May 2013.
Following Chris’ presentation several startup founders presented the stories of how they have developed their ideas and shared the secret of their success. There was a great deal on interest in the GeoVation Challenge and data available from Ordnance Survey including OS OpenData and OS OpenSpace.
Continue reading 'Help business think green – one week left to enter our GeoVation challenge'»
Held at Imperial College, London between 8th April and 26th June, Urban Prototyping (UP London) is an International festival that brings more than 300 developers, technologists, academics, artists, government bodies and community groups together for a series of events that focus on the role that digital technology can play in creating sustainable society.
This year we were invited to participate and contribute to the agenda, which has a specific theme concentrating on the role that digital technology can play in harnessing the creation of resilient environments, economies and communities. We were delighted to accept the invite, as the festival presents an opportunity for us to introduce our range of products and services in such a context, whilst allowing us to engage with communities that might not have previously considered the many benefits geographic information can bring to potential innovations,
On Tuesday, a series of workshops were held that explored the “Internet of Things for Future Cities” and we contributed to the session by running a 2-hour workshop. We used the time by firstly reminding and in some instances, introducing people to the geographic information that Ordnance Survey have produced and maintained for over 200 years. After setting this context, we then provided details of both our free web mapping API – OS OpenSpace – as well as our range of OS OpenData products before inviting everyone to partake in a shortened version of our popular OS OpenData Masterclass. Many developers have used OS OpenData and OS OpenSpace to solve problems and in turn create social, economic and environmental value, so it seemed entirely relevant to offer this information to the festival goers.
Continue reading 'Ordnance Survey takes part at Urban Prototyping Festival'»
Over the last couple of years Ordnance Survey has been working on a collaborative project with UK Location Programme and Cabinet Office to implement map-based tools, making it easier for users to search and preview public location datasets available on data.gov.uk. The project was completed to further enable the publication of location datasets in support of the UK Location Strategy, and as part of the UK contribution to the European INSPIRE project.
We are now pleased to announce that the code developed by Ordnance Survey for these mapping tools has been released as open source.
The Map Based Search (see image below) allows users to draw a box on a background map, leading to a search for datasets which are wholly or partially contained in that area. It also features a gazetteer, so the user can locate by place name where on the map they want to draw their search box. This provide a richer, more advanced way of searching, at national, regional and local level, for records of data sets and services that are referenced by geographical coordinates.
Continue reading 'Ordnance Survey, UK Location Programme and Cabinet Office develop map-based search tool for data.gov.uk and release the code as open source'»
For any of our blog followers that aren’t aware, Ordnance Survey offer a web mapping service called OS OpenSpace. The Application Programming Interface (API) allows developers to embed our maps into public websites and mobile applications, for free.
But why do developers choose OS OpenSpace above other free web mapping providers? Well, some of the mapping data offered through our service is based on our world-famous paper map series which many are familiar with (1:50 000 scale mapping data is offered through OS OpenSpace; whilst 1:25 000 scale data is offered through OS OpenSpace Pro – which is the paid-for version of the web mapping service). The feedback we’ve received from customers who have are using OS OpenSpace, suggests they believe the quality of the data, particularly in rural areas is unrivalled. The level of detail provided means that it’s possible to create applications with detailed information on any given area, rather than providing just an overview and this is a point that many developers get excited by.
We have just released OS OpenSpace v4.0, which supports mobile touch devices, meaning any website using OS OpenSpace can be viewed and panned on tablets and mobile devices, enhancing user experience and providing even more possibilities for web developers. The new functionality, such as kinetic mapping, enables smoother panning; and new touch screen functionality allows users of your website application to easily add markers, routes etc. using a tablet or mobile device.
Continue reading 'OS OpenSpace developer event on 26 February – sign up now'»
Broken line of code stopping you from embedding a web-map on your website? Haven’t quite managed to mend the markers on your online map? An offline mapping-related problem that you need some advice with? Well, have no fear, help is here!
Back by popular demand, our resident GeoDoctor returns on Thursday 17 January. From 10 am to 3 pm, we’ll be holding our first GeoSurgery of 2013 at the Google Campus in London. During the drop-in session, the GeoDoctor will be on hand to diagnose and provide advice for all of those Geo-related aches, pains and agonies that might have been preventing you from making headway with your project – helping you get back on track by prescribing the next course of action.
Continue reading 'The return of the GeoDoctor'»
With just under a week until Christmas Day, many of us will be looking forward to the festive break. For many, the holiday period provides an opportunity to reflect on the activities and achievements completed during the past calendar year. And what a busy year it’s been for Ordnance Survey’s Innovation team! You may have read what the team have been up to recently on the GeoVation blog but for those that missed it, we thought you would be interested to read a review about the fourth series of OS OpenData masterclasses that we ran during the last two weeks of November, so here it is.
Following on from the three previously successful series of masterclasses, we decided to revamp the fourth series, based on feedback received from the previous events. For the first time, participants were shown how to use OS OpenSpace, our free web mapping service that allows users to display up-to-date Ordnance Survey mapping in a web page or online environment. Classmates learned how and where to access code examples, how to use Web-Map Builder, a tool designed to simplify the process of embedding a map into a website; as well as demonstrating an interactive way to experiment with code in the Code Playground.
At each class, we had a couple of members from our technical team on handto answer questions and to generally provide more information about our data and web mapping service offering. We had some interesting conversations – from discussing architecture options of web map services using open source software (such as Apache Tomcat, PostGIS and Geoserver) – to the use of OS OpenData products such as OS VectorMap District for analysis or the various possibilities offered by our Web Services such as OS OpenSpace and our commercial Web Map Service – OS OnDemand.
The classes were held in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Nottingham, Cardiff and London – and we received many more requests for further events to be held elsewhere in the future. Whilst we haven’t confirmed plans for more classes in 2013, it’s highly likely we will and we’re sure to include dates at locations around Great Britain.
Continue reading 'OS OpenData masterclasses a great success'»
No doubt you’ll have heard of ‘Cloud GIS’, but do you know the benefits and challenges for its implementation?
So, if you’ve ever wondered…
• How to leverage geo-data assets across the whole of a business?
• If ‘Cloud GIS’ is right for your organisation?
• What are the opportunities with the new pattern of ‘Cloud GIS’?
• What makes a good professional web-mapping implementation?
• What are some lessons learnt for a business-wide web-mapping?
• How do we ensure security with organisational web-maps?
… then you should join us at the AGI’s Web Mapping & Cloud GIS for GIS Professionals’ Seminar, to be held on Thursday 22 November at the AGI Offices in London.
Continue reading 'Are you ready for GIS in the cloud?'»
We’re pleased to announce that we’ll be running a series of free OS OpenData masterclasses in November. With our first stop being Aberdeen on Wednesday 14 November, a further four classes will be delivered at locations across Great Britain.
The classes are open to anyone interested in learning more about open data. So if you’re a developer, a member of a community group, a social entrepreneur or just simply curious about open data and what’s possible – why not come along for a day of tutorials, practical exercises and discussions?
The aim of each class is to provide a greater understanding about both the history and theory of open data as well as giving you dedicated time to use some of the tools and techniques needed to make use of the information. We’ll be teaching you how to use geographic datasets available from us, through both OS OpenData and OS OpenSpace, alongside other government department and public-sector organisation open datasets, all of which are freely available to order via websites such as data.gov.uk.
Continue reading 'OS OpenData masterclasses – November dates announced!'»
Last week we presented at the fourth Open Source GIS conference at the Nottingham Geospatial Institute, University of Nottingham. The annual conference provides a platform for people from across government, academia, industry and open source communities to network and share ideas for future collaborative work in open source, open standards and open data geospatial technologies.
So…for the benefit of those of us that aren’t sure what open source is, well, it is often described as being a way of working that allows the source code for software applications to be made freely and openly available, encouraging a public and collaborative approach to the ongoing development and enhancement of the software. This ensures that everybody can contribute to, and benefit from, these developments.
Image: Nottingham Geospatial Institute, University of Nottingham
Continue reading 'All things open at Ordnance Survey – using open source GIS'»