GWF2013 program

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Confirmed Program for Geospatial World Forum 2013


For this years OSGeo track on GWF we looked for an optimal blend of succesfull opensource usecases and some substantive talks to enlarge insight in business concepts around open source software in the geospatial sector. You'll notice there is a slight focus on metadata use. Since metadata is one of the major players in making geospatial data accessible. And data is what we've seen a lot of last year. About every week some country or city announced a new open data portal. And a vast amount of open data is location oriented. Providing new opportunities for Enterprizes to create appealling apps.

11:30-13:00 - Session 1

  • Paul van Genuchten (Geocat, host)
  • Just vd Broecke ( / OpenGeoGroep, intro)
  • Andrew Ross (Eclipse - locationtech)
  • Marjan Bevelander (IPO)
  • Marc Vloermans
  • Arnulf Christl (Metaspatial)

13:00-14:00 Lunch break

14:00-16:00 - Session 2

  • Markus M (FEM - Grass)
  • Simone Giannecchini (Geosolutions)
  • Chris van Lith (B3P)
  • Jorge Samuel Mendes de Jesus (Isric)
  • Oliver Morris (Neftex Inc)


Speakers come from a diversity of different organizations and backgrounds:

  • B3Partners, The Netherlands
  • Interprovinciaal Overleg, The Netherlands
  • Camptocamp SA, Switzerland
  • Fondazione Edmund Mach (FEM), Italy
  • Eclipse Foundation Inc, Canada
  • Metaspatial, Germany
  • ISRIC World Soil Information, The Netherlands
  • Just Objects B.V., The Netherlands
  • GeoSolutions, Italy

Markus M

Works at the Fondazione Edmund Mach (FEM) - San Michele all'Adige (Trento, Italy)

Andrew Ross

Andrew Ross is Director of Ecosystems at the Eclipse Foundation. He is responsible for the LocationTech working group, Long Term Support program, Common Build Infrastructure initiative, and Membership services.

Andrew is an award winning software architect and technology leader. Prior to the Eclipse Foundation, Andrew was Director of Engineering at Ingres. His team added OGC compliant spatial support to the Ingres database, and added support for Ingres geospatial in many applications including ArcGIS, Mapserver, Geoserver, and more. Prior to to Ingres, Andrew was a Software Architect at Nortel where he developed Telecom solutions based on open source technologies.

Andrew is Director of the LocationTech industry working group hosted at the Eclipse Foundation, a charter member of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo), and project lead for the Freeseer video recording and streaming suite.


The Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGEO), modeled loosely on the Apache Foundation, was founded in March, 2006. The OSGEO has been incredibly successful and has grown rapidly to support 25 or so projects, some in incubation, 20 chapters worldwide, and a national conference, FOSS4G, which last year in Denver attracted about 900 participants.One of the most important developments in open source software is the rise of the open source foundation driven by a several needs, among which one of the most important is the need for corporate engagement. These non profit legal entities offer projects important benefits that are difficult for a project to fund on its own including providing a host for managing fiscal and intellectual property shared resources such as trademarks and shared copyrights, governance, and a liability firewall for community participants. These foundation encourage trust in the long term stability of the projects they support and, most importantly for enterprise software, they encourage corporate participation. A number of people advocating for open source geospatial software have seen the need for services and facilitates to enable corporate engagement. The Eclipse Foundation provides services to reduce friction for organizations to re-use and contribute to open source projects. This supports business developing products and services that depend upon open source and in turn, the open source projects benefit from re-use, investment, and increased credibility. Based on this thinking the Eclipse Foundation with a team of representatives from notable companies and open source projects has initiated what is now officially known as the Eclipse Foundation LocationTech Working Group along. The LocationTech Working Group is intended to complement the important role the OSGEO and to fill an important gap in the enterprise geospatial market and provide benefits to the broader open source community. In this presentation the motivation for, business benefits, and an overview of the structure of the LocationTech Working Group will be presented.

Arnulf Christl

Arnulf Christl is director of Metaspatial specializing on secure geospatial data access. He currently consults to the Ordnance Survey Great Britain on its enterprise scale service architecture. He is a member of the OGC Architecture Board coordinating international standard development. Until 2012 he was president of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo) which he co-founded in 2006. He developed the architecture of the eContent+ project ESDIN for a consortium of 12 European National Mapping Agencies. He has a thorough background in agile management and has guided a diverse selection of teams through the changes that are required for successful implementation.


The term "Open Data" touches a broad range of aspects concerning data access, ownership, copyright and licensing but it is neither well defined nor clear cut. As a result there is a lot of potential for misunderstanding depending on who uses it in which context. At the same time Open Data has become a core term used in data policies which calls of a much clearer definition. Increasingly businesses are looking into how Open Data can be leveraged to create added value. To bring clarity into this situation the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo) maintains a white paper on Open Data in the geospatial context. It contains a clear definition of the terms, puts them into context and offers an additional set of criteria to more precisely define the scope of Open Data. It can be split into three major types:

  • Factual data collections where values should not be modified (e.g. temperature measurement, speed control data).
  • Authoritative data which is part of a legal framework and system.
  • Community processed data which is created and maintained in an open and transparent consensus process.

Finally the presentation will give examples of commercial uses of all three types of Open Data.

Chris van Lith

Chris van Lith is experienced in translating technological opportunities into viable commercial products: first in industry (chemical, life sciences), now in information technology (internet). In '83 he graduated on his masters in chemical technology at university of Eindhoven. Currently he's director of the Opensource Geospatial Innovation company B3Partners.

Abstract Using standards to protect investments in Open Source GIS

One expects from closed source suppliers that new software versions are either backwards compatible or that a smooth upgrade process is available. Potential users of open source feel insecure in this respect. This presentation will promote the use of standards as an insurance policy against the risk of getting stuck with an abandoned GIS project.

B3Partners offers a comprehensive GIS suite that covers most aspects of a geospatial infrastructure: loading of data (ETL), design of maps, security and a geo-cms for publication. This suite is build completely from open source projects. B3Partners did add wizards and user interfaces to ensure utilization without any programming effort. From the start B3Partners was aware of the risk that one of the underlying projects would no longer be supported. Therefore B3Partners designed an architecture based on building blocks that communicate using standards to minimize aforementioned risks.

The B3P GIS Suite uses well known OGC standards like WMS, WFS and CSW for communication between the building blocks of the suite. One of more important and visible building blocks is the viewer engine. Back in 2008 B3Partners used a Flash engine, but at the time we foresaw that this may become obsolete over time. Therefore we devised an javascript interface for map engines. The Flash engine was embedded using this interface. Later this interface allowed us the embed OpenLayers and now Leaflet could be next. Thus we are changing engines without the need to change the other building blocks. This protects our investment.

Marjan Bevelander

Marjan Bevelander is Senior beleidsmedewerker geo-informatie at Interprovinciaal Overleg. She did het masters in Geographical Information Systems at University of Salford.

Simone Giannecchini

Simone Giannecchini is the Founder and Director of GeoSolutions SAS, Lucca, Italy. Geosolutions is a geospatial ICT company with a strong commitment to providing innovative, robust, cost-effective professional services and solutions based on best-of-breed Open Source technologies.

Simone Giannecchini's Areas of interest include, GIS with emphasis on raster data management and generic performance optimization, Image Processing, ebRIM and ebXML and advanced visualization techniques.

Jorge Samuel Mendes de Jesus

ISRIC - World Soil Information is an independent foundation and the ICSU accredited World Data Centre for Soils (WDC-Soils). It was founded in 1964 through the International Soil Science Society (ISSS) and United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). It has a mandate to serve the international community with information about the world’s soil resources to help addressing major global issues. ISRIC operates on three priority areas: i) soil data and soil mapping, ii) application of soil data in global development issues and iii) training and education


ISRIC has a mandate to serve the international community as custodian of world soil data and information and to increase awareness and understanding of soils in major global issues. ISRIC collects, stores, processes and disseminates global soil and terrain information for research and development of sustainable land use.. To fulfil this role at the global scale ISRIC has developed its web-based FOSS based Global Soil Information Facilities (GSIF), which also contains an enterprise database “World Soil Information Services” for storing soil information. Generally, GSIF i) facilitate crowd-sourced, web-based entry, storage and extraction of soil profile data, area-class soil maps and global grids of environmental data, such as satellite imagery, digital elevation maps and climate and land cover maps; ii) support the automated production of consistent, harmonized soil maps at multiple spatial scales; iii) strengthen soil information handling capacity in an interactive and participatory process; iv) provide feedback mechanisms to increase accuracy and user engagement; and to v) provide added-value products and processing chains to local, national, regional and global soil science communities. FOSS is instrumental in a ) development of these components, and b ) in deployment in our training component and its users around the world, where budget and knowledge constraints are limiting capacity building.

Just vd Broecke

Just van den Broecke studied Chemistry and Computing Science at the University of Amsterdam. For 11 years he worked on telecommunications software as an engineer and architect at AT&T/Lucent Bell Laboratories. In 1997 he became self-employed, working from his own company Just Objects B.V., developing and consulting in the field of object technology, Java, multimedia and mobile applications. After having developed several GPS mobile apps and having a lifelong passion for maps, he fell for the beauty of the Geospatial domain. For Just, Free and Open Source has always been 'a way of life'. He has initiated and contributed to numerous open source geospatial projects such as GeoNetwork, the Heron Mapping Client and recently NLExtract, ETL tools for free Dutch geospatial datasets. He attempts to regularly contribute as a mapper to OpenStreetMap. Just is representative of, the Dutch Language Local chapter of the international Open Source Geospatial Foundation (

Chair: Paul van Genuchten

Paul van Genuchten graduated in 99 for his masters in Soil Science at Wageningen University. Just in time to notice the first interactive maps on the web. Fascinated by this phenomena he started developing in the world of web mapping using open source technologies like Mapserver, Postgis and OpenLayers. More recently he focussed on SDI-architectures and metadata implementations for Inspire. Last year he joined GeoCat, the founder of the Geonetwork OpenSource project, where he is a developer and consultant on any Open SDI related matter, with a focus on metadata.