OSGeo Code Sprint 2014 in Vienna - A great success!

News Date: 
8 Apr 2014

In the week from March 24 to 28 more than 60 developers from over 18 projects gathered for the OSGeo Code Sprint 2014 in the rooms generously provided by the City of Vienna (MA 14). Improvements of and new features for the individual projects were decided and implemented in direct personal communication among the relevant developers. A very important core element of free and open source software development is the active exchange and the direct collaboration of the individual projects and initiatives.

Vector tiles are one of the current hot topics among the whole community that have been extensively discussed at the Code Sprint. A specification draft has been prepared and will be discussed further.

The following paragraphs provide some highlights and achievements of the various participating projects during the Code Sprint.

With 210 updates in the code base during the Code Sprint the international GRASS GIS development team has released the new version 7 after 6 years of development. The free software package provides novel methods to process, analyze, and visualize geographic data and runs on all major platforms (MS Windows, Apple, Linux, BSD) and architectures (x86, amd64, arm) from laptops to mainframes.

The QGIS project took care of bug resolving, discussed future new features, updated and simplified the management of plugins which can be generated and freely provided by users. Together with the GRASS GIS project the integration of version 7 in QGIS has been prepared.

The MapServer team decided on the release plan for the upcoming 7.0 release, worked on easier processes for documentation translations, and resolved several smaller issues with respect to coverty scans, dateline crossing data, pixel is point vs. pixel is area, UTF-grid, etc.

A proposal was made or maybe better an experiment undertaken to harmonize the data models of GDAL and OGR. Considerable work went into scala bindings for GDAL.

The PostGIS team succeeded to close all remaining tickets for the 2.1.2 and 2.0.5 releases and releasing them. Very interesting work started on 3D exports using three.js.

OpenLayers 3 is a comprehensive rewrite of a well established library for displaying and interacting with geospatial data on the web. The new version is currently in pre-release beta state. During the sprint, the documentation system was improved to include documentation of the events that the library emits. Work on feature clustering to unclutter a map with too many point features was started, and a demo of displaying HiDPI (Retina) tiles from the Austrian basemap was created. The inter-project discussion about creating a common transport format for vector tiles will benefit the project in the near future.

pycsw finished packaging for version 1.8 and worked on OSGeo project incubation.

In order to find and exploit synergies in functionality and technology the projects EOxServer and GeoNode started a closer collaboration at the Code Sprint.

Various other projects have also been present and active at the Code Sprint like PDAL, ZOO-Project, MapMint, etc.

A great result for the local community in Vienna and Austria is the start of regular OSGeo/FOSSGIS meetups.