More Disruptive Technology: GeoCommons Maker!

I just took a quick spin through GeoCommons Maker! product. On my first try I got an “unable to load your data” when I clicked on the TCEG TX Properties map on the Quick start panel of the home page.

I’m sure they’ll get the glitches worked out. I hope they resurrect the heat map capability formerly offered through geocommons. Many of the graduated circles, like this one, don’t communicate very well IMO. In a lot of these cases a heat map would work better.

I suspect this release will re-ignite the paleo-neo geography debates. These debates are not really new, they remind me a lot of the discussions after release of ArcView 1.0. (Incidentally, Maker! appears to me to be functionally quite similar to AV1.) Many command-line ARC/INFO gurus thumbed their noses at all the silly GUI eye candy. Once Avenue came out (with AV2.0) they soon changed their tune. Funny how opportunities to add value to a technology can change one’s attitude towards it. AV2 also introduced Object Oriented Programming (OOP) concepts for the first time to a lot of GIS programmers.

I wonder if Maker! will follow a similar evolution. Instead of OOP, perhaps Maker! might make the mainstream GIS community see the value of Software as a Service (SaaS). It really would be great to see a site where we could build apps, and not just maps.

2 comments so far

  1. Sean Gorman on

    Thanks for taking some time to play with GeoCommons, and sorry for the data set bonking. Right now quick start data sets are the most recently uploaded. The problem is if the a bad data set was uploaded by someone or later deleted then you get the “no load” error. We’ll most likely be switching it to static list of good data shortly. Always learn interesting things after a launch 😉

    Very interesting comparison to AV1 and I think you’ll see the programming side of that comparison manifest itself. Think of it like a geospatial app store like the iPhone.


  2. Kirk Kuykendall on

    Hey Sean – I figured the glitch was likely a simple one, all the others I chose worked fine.

    Look forward to the geospatial app store.

    Thanks for responding,

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