[ka-Map-users] yet another ka-map interface

Lorenzo Becchi lorenzo at ominiverdi.com
Tue Aug 8 10:28:38 EDT 2006

In my recent experience I've seen that many persons were not used to  
a custom layout interface as the one of version 0.2

The winManager is still futuristic, so next link shows my  candidate  
to be the user interface for ka-Map version 1.0


First of all I have to say that I have not yet the chance to test it  
with Internet Explorer. I'm in a remote part of Dominican Republic  
and have rare internet connections.
I've stressed this code with Safari and Firefox.

Many changes have been introduced so I try to explain them as they  
arise in my mind:

As it's simple to notice, I've tried to stick to a much more  
"windows" friendly layout. Who's used to ESRI products can naturally  
see a very close similarity to ArcReader/ArcExplorer (quite  
explicit). Until I've maintained the Nomad icon set, I've adapted it  
at a windows button style. I had to invent some more buttons, hope  
that Aleks Herzog can once again come and help us.
To be honest I have to say that I've never had a good feeling with  
Windows layouts in general but I've understood how is easier for a  
newbie to understand ka-Map features if the user interface in much  
more "standard".
Stats on my web server show that 80% of the people who's looking at   
our ka-Map implementations have Windows.
More than newbies, I've seen that old GIS men are so Windows/ESRI  
focused that have big problems to positive evaluate different  
Hope this layout will help to spread ka-Map to a wider audience.

in the toolbar from left to right:
1) map selector -> no changes
2) Map Info -> the default selector. it shows the keymap and the  
mouse geo coords. I've divided it form the legend to make it cleaner.
3) Legend -> always the same legend but I'm intended to change it a  
bit in the next days to avoid HTML tables and to allow a more  
customizable layout.
4) Print -> as easy as possible. Choose an output and the document  
should be downloaded automatically. PDF layout is always the same  
(sorry David, hope to have time to merge your code soon).
5) Zoom functions -> always the same. I've reintroduced the scale  
select to stick to the interface.
6) Identify/query -> some improvements. First of all no more pop-ups  
(I hate them). I've introduced raster identification but it should be  
refined. The system now looks in LAYER METADATA, as Andrea's query  
system, looking for this fields:
		"fields" "fiendname:Alias1,fieldname2:Alias2,fieldname3:Alias3"
		"searchfield" "field_to_be_searched"
the syntax is used to determine which fields to show and which alias  
to use in the printed table. As usual, LAYER needs a TEMPLATE  
argument to be queryable for mapserver.
Both tollerance and tolleranceunits are useful to refine the system. es:
I'm intended to add a button to "hilite" vectorial objects using  
Andrea's system. This will take a while more maybe... still to decide.
7) Search system -> same layout that Identify. looking for same  
fields in the metadata. Naturally it skips raster layers. That should  
be refined to fulltext search and multiple field search but I've fear  
that's not a mapserver skill (can somebody help with this?). I'm sure  
I'll have to better study mapserver query and search systems.
8)Link to this view -> I've decided to add a stupid function to send  
links by e-mail. To be refined.

I've took away all panels except the scalebar that I've refined with  
a different CSS to make it smaller (I've fear It's not working fine  
with IE).

1)  Identify -> I've not yet decided the politic to limit output or  
allow a full output control. At the moment it's limited to 20 record  
per layer. It would be nice to use a dynamic page selector to show  
all data. No clear idea about it for the moment.
2) Search system -> too simple.

1) Tooltips -> I've not yet integrated the tooltip system. I'll have  
to refine it.
2) Measure -> it should be implemented. no technology is convincing  
me... it's a stupid feature that many want.
3) Navigation History -> it should be easily implemented. I have to  
decide it's priority.
4) cache clean up for hilite and print system.
5) Search system - > missing all advanced features.
6) Identify system ->  missing all advanced features.

I've fear there's a little bug in extent calculation. It seems to me  
(still to confirm) that the viewport extent is calculated with the  
browser margin as left margin instead that the viewport real margin.

to a more intimate view, all panels have been reported as HTML code  
in the index_kaExplorer.html (service div) to easily allow some text  

So after all this comments, I'm still convinced we are close to a  
mature client.
I will really appreciate all kind of comments and suggestions.  They  
will influence my priorities.

thanks to all

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