HTML 5, GeoStyle Sheets and Vectors: Cartagen

By December 2, 2009 No Comments

Perhaps we need to get out more, but we are getting quite excited about the possibilities of HTML 5. The ability to build applications that run naively in the browser without the need for plugins will allow agencies such as the police, government, health service etc a to view data that is currently restricted due to rules on installing plugins/software on networks.

As such imagine our joy when we discovered Cartagen – a vector-based, client-side framework for rendering maps in native HTML 5. Written in JavaScript, it uses the new Canvas element to load mapping data from various sources, including OpenStreetMap. In short, Cartagen lets you make beautiful, customized maps with a simple stylesheet.

Maps are styled with Geographic Style Sheets (GSS), a cascading stylesheet specification for geospatial information – a decision which leverages literacy in CSS to make map styling more accessible. However, GSS is a scripting language as well, making Cartagen an ideal framework for mapping dynamic data.

Head over to Cartagen for a look, thanks a lot to Kirk of MossCreekMedia for sending this one in.


Andy is Professor of Digital Urban Systems at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at University College London.