Thursday, August 21, 2003
Speaking of SVG--literally
source: SD Times

"SALT Forum consortium has enabled speech navigation of Scalable Vector Graphics by extending the W3C standard with a new tagging specification..."

SVG is well appointed for applications like GIS, Location Based Services (LBS). SVG was also designed for Accessibility. At first glance this two observations may not seem terribly related. Of course any LBS benefits greatly from following Accessibility guidelines partly because Accessibility guidelines try to ensure there is no dependency on input devices like mice.

See also

As Dean says,
"You can also consider a search engine, such a Google, to be a particular class of user that can benefit from accessible content. Most search engines primarily index textual content — they cannot easily read text within an image or understand the audio stream of a video. If the graphics on a site are more accessible then search engines can use the accessible content to direct users to the site."
In an age of the Semantic Web , images can have much more value when they have relationships to the components that make the image and to other images--as well as another kind of content (text, video, etc.)

What is even more interesting perhaps, is that someone from Microsoft is mentioning SVG in an important and appropriate way. Does this demonstrate that Microsoft is finally making a public commitment to SVG (beyond the welcome step of Visio 2003 which has been announced for a while now.) It is probably too early to say that with any certainty, but it is certainly a positive sign.

SVG and real world GIS
source: Interactive SVG mapping with MapInfo location-based intelligence

Believe it or not, I'm still catching up on some of the SVG Open talks that I didn't have a chance to attend. My latest "discovery" is the talk given by Dany Bouchard of DBx Geomatics. Dany gives great real world examples of SVG in the GIS world that should make even perenial skeptics (I won't name names) stop and think.

In the words of a product manager at a major company I talked to recently, "SVG is inevitable". Inevitable indeed!

Another great SVG presentation. Thanks Dany!

For more information and more demos of what's possible with GIS, see

By the way, I couldn't help but notice the new features in their new 2.0 product. (Forgive my choice to link to the English page. French is also available.)

Thursday, August 14, 2003
News: Microsoft looses law suit

Not specifically related to SVG, but this could have an impact on the delivery of web content, and future browsers or thin-client platforms.

"Eolas Technologies, which develops Internet technologies that it licenses to third parties, is alleging that Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft's Windows 98, Windows 95, and Internet Explorer products infringe on its patented technology. Eolas says it holds a patent on technology that allows a Web browser to access interactive programs embedded in a Web page, such as plug-ins, applets, scriplets, or ActiveX controls."

"[Eolas] developed the technology that allows a Web browser, such as Microsoft's Internet Explorer, to access interactive features of a Web page.

"Those features, such as altering data or viewing objects from different angles, are central to the way Web browsers now operate, particularly enabling online commerce."

"A federal court jury yesterday decided that Microsoft Corp. must pay $520.6 million to a Chicago technology entrepreneur and the University of California after deciding that the company's popular Internet-browsing software infringes an existing patent."

This is interesting in light of Microsoft's announcement that they would not be developing Internet Explorer for the Mac and that IE will no longer be available standalone.

"As part of the OS (operating system), IE will continue to evolve, but there will be no future standalone installations. IE6 SP1 is the final standalone installation," said Brian Countryman IE Program Manager.

As an aside, Microsoft has also said that it will discontinue Outlook Express in favor of MSN and Hotmail. Kind of interesting since OE is currently the default news reader. (Outlook doesn't read News.)

These moves show a great deal of confidence or arrogance on Microsoft's part that they can own the everything from clients to servers and everything in between. From a marketing perspective, it will be difficult for anyone to launch a successful browser to compete with Microsoft's monolithic fat client approach given their 90% or so of the market but nearly everyone in the tech industry has a vested interest in something being done.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003
New Demos: Network topology and more maps
I found a site with some really nice demos that highlight pratical uses for SVG animation. I liked network diagram in particular because it shows off how SVG can be used for eLearning and for network topology.

Another site that I've been spending some time at is SmartMaps Applications . GIS and LBS (Location Based Services) have always been an exciting area for SVG. With SVGT/SVGB hitting phones in the near future, the commercial application is easy to appreciate.

Sunday, August 10, 2003
Really cool examples
source: Dean's SVG Open talk

Okay, I missed Dean's talk at SVG Open and now I'm really sorry I did. This is a must see. Particularly:

Friday, August 01, 2003
Article: JPublish project separates the application code from content and data

source: JavaPro

An interesting article about "JPublish" The project web page provides this summary:

"JPublish is a powerful web publishing system designed to ensure a clean separation of developer roles. JPublish includes support for multiple templating engines, including Jakarta Apache's Velocity, FreeMarker and WebMacro. JPublish supports numerous scripting languages including Python, BeanShell, and JavaScript. JPublish is modular and provides for easy extensibility."

The introduction says, "JPublish provides a powerful system for managing your web site's content as well as your web site's application logic." and it says you can define your own templates such as WML. So why not SVG?

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