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Ready to Transform? Solving INSPIRE Implementation Project Challenges Together

Thorsten Reitz and Simon Templer

(Submission #48)


Abstract

This talk outlines our findings in components, frameworks and solutions re-use patterns in the implementation of Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) projects, specifically for the migration, integration, harmonization and other transformation aspects. We then present wetransform.to, a new cloud-based platform which enables solutions re-use through collaboration, sharing and task segmentation.

A core objective of our research in the HUMBOLDT project[1] (2006 - 2011) and follow-up activities such as GS-SOIL and plan4business (2012 – 2014) was to increase re-use of solutions for SDI implementation. To determine what potential there is, we researched re-use quotas for individual components such as Download Services or Desktop GIS, frameworks (on which components and solutions are built, such as ArcObjects), and solutions (customization and configuration of components and frameworks). We found re-use of components and frameworks is very common, but the re-use regarding the integrated solutions putting everything together is very low, with only about 2% of entire solutions being transposed. Usually solutions re-use only works if the complete set of organizational and technical requirements is highly similar between two deployments.

Especially in the integration, harmonization and other transformation components, this is rarely the case. SDI projects are to a large degree integration projects – multiple existing systems need to be connected, complex data needs to be transformed to conform to the final delivery specifications, and multiple clients need to work with the new services. One of the main cost drivers in SDI implementation and related activities such as e-reporting is thus data and systems integration. Also, the related complexity increases projects costs and risks.

The approach we propose to improve transformation re-use and consequently to reduce risks and costs is based on identifying the atomic building blocks that can be re-used. Based on such blocks, we developed a purely declarative approach to transformation of arbitrarily complex data. An early outcome of this is HALE, the HUMBOLDT Alignment Editor[2], which won many users with high accessibility and instant feedback. Taking this technology further, we have now developed wetransform.to, a cloud platform that enables collaborative working in any data transformation project. This web platform provides features such as storing and sharing any project resource such as data, schemas or each individual mapping in the transformation configuration itself, versioning and comparing them, assigning atomic tasks such as asking a Hydrography expert to provide a classification mapping and discussing any process step. It is furthermore intuitive to use so there is no need to learn particular programming languages, highly interactive and implemented to work on multitouch devices.

Categories

Proposal Type:  Oral Presentation
Presentation Type:  Technical/Research

Keywords

INSPIRE Data and Service Sharing
Technologies, methods and tools required to deliver INSPIRE


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