Free and Open Source Software for Geomatics Conference FOSS4G 2010 Barcelona

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Webmapping is a relatively new discipline in university programs.

Since 1990s the consumption of geographic information through internet has increased and nowadays webmapping technologies are widely used not only in research institutions, governmental agencies and private businesses but also in citizen groups. Educators are requested to provide programs and individuate activities to transfer knowledge and cultivate skill for preparing students in this field.

The Geographic Information Science and Technology Body of Knowledge (GISTBoK) unfortunately can’t help in this regards being completely missing the internet approach. 

At the Politecnico di Milano – Como Campus - we have taught webmapping since 2003. The course is given at the Master level both for Environmental and Geomatic Engineers and for Computer Engineers. From the beginning we favoured the usage of free and open source technologies, which allow students to be independent of buying software and, in case, to easily develop their own pieces of code. Since 2003, the available technologies have been rapidly increasing in quantity and quality. Moreover many basic specifications have been published by ISO and (in greater measure) by OGC. The paper we present does not have any claim to give general recipes with respect to the huge question of defining a core curriculum for webmapping. Simply, in order to boost this discussion, we want to present our experiences, the instructional activities we have been proposing to students and the tools we have made available for them (and which are or will be made available for the all the community). To conclude, in the last session of the paper, we present also our future plans related to new sensor web and processing services. 


Luana Valentini - Politecnico di Milano
Maria Antonia Brovelli - Politecnico di Milano
Xuan Quang Truong - Politecnico di Milano