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uDig Community at Eclipsecon

Posted by jive on March 18, 2006 at 3:35 PM PST




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uDig RCP Community

Meeting
the Natives at
href="http://www.eclipsecon.org/2006/Sub.do?id=493">Eclipsecon



Welcome to a corner of Eclipse RCP culture, my name is Jody Garnett and
I have the pleasure of hacking away at project called href="http://udig.refractions.net/">uDig (i.e.
User-friendly Desktop Internet GIS).



The uDig application is almost a year old now, and is rapidly
approaching its second major release.  The uDig project
actually started (with a bit of help from the GeoConnections program)
almost two years ago (wow what a ride). We took a number of risks on
the uDig project and many of them pay off. Going with Eclipse RCP was
one such risk.

And this year we will be at EclipseCon

Specifically a core member of community, Richard Gould, will be in
attendance.



Richard will be located the " href="http://www.eclipsecon.org/2006/Sub.do?type=pavillion">Open
Source Pavilion" and will no doubt have some href="http://udig.refractions.net/docs/udig-demo-low.htm">cool
new uDig 1.1 features(flash) to show you.  Please
stop by and say hi to Richard, he won't have free beer tickets or
anything, but you can quickly put together some amazing maps from free
data, published with open standards.



By way of introduction to Richard let me hook up you with his most
popular piece of writing: href="http://udig.refractions.net/confluence/display/DEV/3+Adding+History+to+Dialogs+and+Wizards">

  • href="http://udig.refractions.net/confluence/display/DEV/3+Adding+History+to+Dialogs+and+Wizards">Adding
    History to Dialogs and Wizards

Now this was hard to figure out two years ago, now there are lots of
nice Eclipse books. Still it hard to figure this kind of thing out the
first (and even second time) you do it. And this is still one of the
most popular pages in the uDig Developers guide.



Even two years on we are answering RCP questions like:

  • href="http://udig.refractions.net/confluence/display/DEV/How+do+I+configure+keyboard+shortcuts%3F">How
    do I configure keyboard shortcuts?
  • href="http://udig.refractions.net/confluence/display/DEV/How+should+I+use+a+Progress+Monitor%3F">How
    should I use a Progress Monitor?
  • href="http://udig.refractions.net/confluence/display/DEV/How+to+wait+in+the+display+thread%3F">How
    to wait in the display thread?
  • href="http://udig.refractions.net/confluence/display/DEV/Common+Plugin+Files">What
    is this file for?

uDig as more then a GIS

One thing we do have a bit of fun explaining about uDig is that it
actually functions as a "GIS Platform" from which you can build your
own custom mapping application (without all the usual complicated GIS
stuff like "layers"). Our developers list is alive with a great set of
people from around the world taking on all manner of interesting
activities.



For uDig 1.1 you can even embed the GISPlatform into your Eclipse RCP
project.



Here are a couple of examples of uDig based applications:

  • OGC OWS-3
    GeoDSS Client:
    we had the please to produce one of these
    "targeted" GIS system based on uDig through are involvement in with the
    Open Geospatial Consortium Open Web Services Phase 3 Initiative. Off
    all the people represented there we are the href="http://udig.refractions.net/confluence/display/OWS3/Home">one
    you can download.  And you should check out the very
    interesting movie they made, with thick client wiki collaboration ,
    geovideo, web service chaining and more.
  • Populations
    at Risk:
     an interesting little project
    prototyping relief work.
    •   href="http://udig.refractions.net/confluence/download/attachments/6182/popAtRisk.png">screen
      snapshot

I will try and post some more examples as ask permission on the mailing
list.

uDig as a Community

One of the things I am most excited about is the uDig community
subversion space, we invite those working on uDig plugins (from Peru to
Finland so far) to take make use of the same repository we use for uDig
development.



And here is the best part: we package up these community plugins onto
the uDig download site.



This is exactly how I like to see open source projects function, with
the architecture supporting community involvement. You can
download the latest uDig release, and through a quick trip to the
update manager check out what the community is doing.



Although this is not a technical benefit, it is easily the one of the
strongest arguments to make your next open source project an Eclipse
open source project. (Yes I know that the plug-in system is actually
from OSGi, but until their is a J2EE profile I am not sure anyone will
notice).


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