New Map Medium Education - 23/08/2006

Michael P. Peterson, University of Nebraska at Omaha

In the midst of a map-consumer delivery revolution, the ICA ‘Maps and the Internet Commission’ formed in 1999 continues its work analysing, developing, communicating and educating regarding this new medium. In doing so it makes use of a combination of conferences, symposiums and hands-on workshops.

Meetings have served to promote innovative research and the exchange of information associated with the distribution of maps and spatial data via the internet. Commission meetings since 2000 have focused on identifying key issues and defining a framework for research. Initial work culminated in the 2003 publication of Maps and the Internet, released as a 450-page paperback in 2006 (search at Work on the second volume of the book is currently underway.

The commission has also held workshops throughout the world to promote the exchange of information about internet mapping among an international audience. These workshops, in either lecture or hands-on format, address the different methods of bringing maps and associated data to the internet and are arranged with the help of the host institution. Workshop instructors are commission chair Michael Peterson ( or co-chair Dr Georg Gartner of the Technical University of Vienna in Austria.

Different formats are used for the workshops. Some have been as short as a half or full day, while others have been as long as a week. Some have been presented as a lecture providing an overview of current internet mapping technology, while others have been hands-on sessions with computers, to provide actual training in how the various programs are used. Some have been given to audiences of over a hundred while others have had as few as ten. The specific format chosen for a workshop depends on the facilities available and the needs of the organisation. Workshop format also influences the topics covered, which include some combination of the following: client-server architecture, P2P protocol, thin vs. thick clients, raster-file formats, vector-file formats, map scanning and digitising, Linux operating system, GIS tools, MapServer, interactive maps, animated maps, 3D and virtual reality, Web publishing, JavaScript, XML, GML, scalable vector graphics, and Asynchronous JavaScript and XML (AJAX).

Contact the commission chair at [email protected] if you would like to become a corresponding member of the commission and receive updates on commission activities. Please contact either commission chair or co-chair Georg Gartner at [email protected] if you would like to arrange a workshop.

Last updated: 27/02/2018