[Freegis-list] Ideas on best FOSS options
artem at mapnik.org
Mon Feb 4 11:32:01 CET 2008
On 4 Feb 2008, at 02:01, John Zastrow wrote:
> I need to create an attractive set of static tiles for the USA
> (based on
> shapefiles) to populate a web-server-only (e.g., small-footprint, not
> dynamic, not a real map server) online map to embed in a java-based
> application without internet access.
> My first attempt used ArcGIS to render a GeoTIFF of a layout at high
> resolution and then passed the image into gdal2tiles.py
> (http://www.klokan.cz/projects/gdal2tiles/) (which is EXCELLENT) to
> create a shell OpenLayers app that I can customize. This worked fine,
> except the image quality from ArcGIS was horrible, particularly when
> zoomed in (no anti-alias).
I don't think your approach will work. Even if you manage to create
a very large geotiff, re-sampling it to create low resolution tiles
would produced anything but nice looking maps. Also, for high zoom
levels the image size will blow your memory away. Creating good
cartography would most certainly require per zoom level styling.
> I'm a now trying to use mapnik (mapnik.org) to create the same
> image at
> higher quality. But I am suffering deeply from an acute lack of
> documentation which makes creating the cartography even more painful
> (where are recipes, examples, and docs for mapnik?)
Have a look at : http://trac.openstreetmap.org/browser/applications/
This script generates tiles with all styles and data defined in :
> Is there something else that I can use to create the tiles needed for
> the OpenLayers app?
I suggest you read OpenLayers docs.
> Or is there an easier tool for creating a high-res,
> high-quality georeferenced image that can be used by gdal2tiles.py?
> thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
I'm not familiar with gdal2tiles.py but as I mentioned above, re-
sampling vector maps won't produce high-res, high-quality tiles
(assuming this is what you're trying to achieve). You might try
creating two layers : chop your raster data with gdal2tiles.py and
create transparent overlay tiles using Mapnik. Also, Mapnik supports
gdal raster directly and you can generate high quality tiles with
raster and vector combined. see 
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