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From Miles Fidelman <>
Subject Re: Best stack for querying spatial locations
Date Tue, 05 Jun 2012 09:38:51 GMT
Luca Matteis wrote:
> Hello all,
> I have a scenario where I'm working with a friend of mine that
> maintains a bunch of spatial data in a MS Access database. I want to
> put this data online, as a web-site, and allow people to query it
> using an interface and a RESTful API. So I thought CouchDB + GeoCouch
> would be perfect for this.
> The issue is, how do I upload the MS Access data to my online Couch
> instance? I want the process to be seamless - in the sense that my
> friend will continue making modifications to his MS Access db, and
> then he should "upload" it to the couch using some tool.
> Do I need to write extra code to parse the MS Access into JSON and
> then upload that to my couch? Or is there an easier way? Dunno, maybe
> upload it the MS Access as an attachment and parse it with client side
> JavaScript?
> Also the MS Access is quite large: ~2gb

I think you've jumped a couple of design steps:
- what kinds of spatial data?
- is one person updating the data, or more?
- does the database live on a single PC, or on a server?
- how frequently is it updated?
- is it preferable for updates to propagate live to the online serve, or 
is a periodic dump enough (or preferred)?
- what kinds of queries are going to be made against the data?
- how many queries per unit of time?
- RESTful API implies a liklihood of combining the data with other 
data/services - so what kinds of things will people be doing?

When I hear "geospatial stack" I don't generally think MS Access and 
CouchDB.  I tend to think more:
- Google Maps & KML, and/or
- GeoServer + PostGIS, and/or
- OpenLayers, and/or
- ESRI ArcGIS (for really serious commercial capabilities)

Depending on the details of the problem at hand (the answers to the 
above questions), it could be that:
- MS Access -> <some glue> -> CouchDB/GeoCouch might be a perfectly good 

Or, you might think about something more like:
- MS Access -> GeoServer (w/ some RESTful glue) -> CouchDB -> user 
facing i/f

Or it might make sense to keep some stuff in a geodatabase, other stuff 
in Couch, and mash stuff together in browser-side code.

Your problem statement is way too amorphous at this point.

Miles Fidelman

In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.
In practice, there is.   .... Yogi Berra

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