I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Peter Rushforth, and I work for Natural Resources Canada, in the Canada Centre for Mapping and Earth Observation. I have been active in GIS for many years, but mostly on the data and API side of things.
I am very interested in standards. It seems to me that there is no more ubiquitous standard for information today than HTML. Since HTML5 introduced the <video> and <audio> elements, I thought: "Why not <map>? Maps are a fundamental media type on the Web!" (I said to myself ).
To that end, I initiated a W3C Community Group called Maps For HTML: http://maps4html.org, the ultimate goal of which is to design a <map> element which could be used by HTML authors to create a map in their web page with no script required, but which would support progressive enhancement via script. Also, I think it would be great if map styles could be easily accomplished with CSS, another standard, as ubiquitous as HTML itself.
Currently, I see the HTML element having a syntax something like the following:
<map is="mapml-map" zoom="17" lat="45.398043" lon="-75.70683" projection="OSMTILE"> <layer label="Open Street Map" src="http://geogratis.gc.ca/mapml/osm/" checked> <layer label="Canada Base Map" src="http://geogratis.gc.ca/mapml/cbmt/"> <layer label="CanVec+ 031G" src="http://geogratis.gc.ca/mapml/canvec/50k/features/" class="transparency" checked> </map>
This would allow an HTML author to simply include a functional web map in their page. As a side benefit, it would geocode the page/part of the page.
What do you think?
Canada Centre for Mapping and Earth Observation / Earth Sciences Sector
Natural Resources Canada / Government of Canada
peter.rushforth at canada dot ca / Tel: 613-759-7915
Centre canadien de cartographie et d’observation de la Terre / Secteur des sciences de la Terre
Ressources naturelles Canada / Gouvernement du Canada
peter.rushforth at canada dot ca / Tél: 613-759-7915