Earth-science datasets for the Australian continent online: the AGCRC map-maker, OpenGIS and beyond
S. J. D. COX, 2003. "Earth-science datasets for the Australian continent online: the AGCRC map-maker, OpenGIS and beyond", Evolution and Dynamics of the Australian Plate, R.R. Hillis, R.D. Müller
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A large number of broad-scale datasets showing various aspects of the geology and geophysics of the Australian continent and surroundings are provided as combinable layers in a map-maker on the AGCRC (Australian Geodynamlcs Cooperative Research Centre) website. Using the standard user interface the datasets are delivered as images embedded in a web page. The data underlying the maps can be queried and several other operations are available. We provide an additional method to retrieve only the picture using the Web Map Server (WMS) protocol. WMS is a vendor-neutral interface through which a map-server delivers the data in standard (picture) formats regardless of the underlying database technology used. The user may then combine maps from several providers. WMS was developed by the OpenGIS Consortium (OGC) as part of a project to facilitate interchange of geographic information. This includes data in reusable numeric formats as well as in pictorial form. To take full advantage of the technology, the geology community should use a standard data model for geological entities such as rock units, structural features, drillholes, etc., which are encoded in an XML-based format to be shared on the web and by a variety of application software.