[Freegis-list] time based maps

Stefano Maffulli stef@zoomata.com
24 Sep 2002 20:46:25 +0200

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On Mon, 2002-09-23 at 18:46, Matt.Wilkie wrote:
> The open source community is often accused of merely "chasing tail lights=
> instead of actively engaging in developing truly innovative features. Wel=
l I
> believe I've identified an area which addresses a real need but for which
> there are no tools available (that I'm aware of) - proprietary or not.
> Time based maps: the base units of measurement are *time* instead of spac=
> The length of a highway line on a map represents how long it takes to dri=
> from Berlin to Paris, not how many kilometers apart they are.

Traffic or road representation is not the only useful way of using time
based maps.  Distance expressed in time units depends from speed, that
indeed depends of many more factors mostly not predictable (like traffic
jams, deviations etc).

Much more useful are time maps for representing events, like bird
migrations, forest fires, earthquakes, or any event for which you know
(or you can calculate precisely) when and where they (will) happen.

I know that this software (http://www.commongis.com) can display easily
time based maps, animate them, make analysis and much more. BUT it is
not free (as in freedom) software.  I tried to convince the developers
that it would indeed be a good idea to free it, but I was not good
enough and the software is still non-free.

Here are some examples of the wonderful things that this software can

I hope the developers understand that their software is too special to
let it stay secret in those unfriendly web pages and make it free.


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