Geospatial Commons Workgroup
The workgroup's mission is to define and facilitate the implementation of
a Minnesota Geospatial Commons. The Commons is envisioned to be a
coordinated, next-generation site that will allow users to find, view and
download data; publish metadata and data; and find and use web services and
applications. Additional proposed functions of the site include:
web service ratings and monitoring; back-end broker that connects
applications to web services; user reviews of data and web services.
The workgroup is a joint effort of the
Technical Leadership Workgroup and the
MnGeo Standards Committee. It includes the organizations that have developed the
MN Geographic Data Clearinghouse, and
DataFinder, along with other staff
from state, regional, and county government.
It is too early to know if the Commons will replace the existing major
Minnesota geospatial data discovery sites, or work with them to better
coordinate the effort, but the intention is to make one main location where
people can find and share geospatial resources in Minnesota.
Status report (page 11), Nov. 7, 2012
The Minnesota Geospatial Commons: A vision, Jan. 5, 2012 (22 slides,
700 K, PDF)
Test Version using ESRI Geoportal Extension v. 9.3
This test site implements some, but not all, of the
desired functions of the Commons. Some of the implemented functions require further development. Because of this, the workgroup is not requesting review or feedback at
this time. The test site is available for viewing for those who
What's Next? The Workgroup is recommending that a
production site be developed using ESRI's Geoportal Server v. 10. Next steps include developing a project plan for a production version
and seeking approval of the plan by stakeholder agencies.
Services Requirements report:
- Clarifies what comprises a comprehensive documentation of a web service
- Determines key characteristics needed to achieve "trust" in a web
Mark Kotz, Metropolitan Council, 651-602-1644,
Work Plan 2010-11
Check the Project
Plan (pages 6-7, updated 6/7/10) and the most recent meeting materials (in next section below) for
progress on the workplan.
- Commons (previously called a Broker or Portal)
- Refine list of functions.
- Prioritize functions (click here for the
current list of priorities)
- Create a collaborative work site for our workgroup.
- Compare prioritized desired functions to off-the-shelf product
- Compare prioritized desired functions to existing
- Research activities in progress in other states, and
internationally, that can be leveraged for this project.
- Determine if an off-the-shelf product could be used in whole or in
part or if an existing site could be copied or used to meet the highest
priority needs. If so, is additional design work needed to meet all
- Research sources of funding.
- Recommend a course for achieving a preliminary version that
exemplifies what is ultimately wanted, even if not all functions are
- Implement a test-bed broker as a first step in understanding the
needs and as a way to “kick the tires” on at least some of the desired
- Include an assessment of user needs to clarify the functionality
that users really want (so we are not building something we don’t
- Set a course for production of a complete commons.
- Web Service Trust Issues
- Clarify what comprises comprehensive documentation of a web service.
- Review lessons learned from the GeoService Finder project, in
particular, that project team’s investigation of best practices and
standards promoted by the OGC, FGDC, etc.
- Review services portion of the North American Profile of the ISO
- Agree on a list of key characteristics that must be addressed to
achieve “trust” in a web service.
- Further define the roles of the Broker (both machine and human) and
the Enterprise Service Provider with respect to quality of service and
- Develop or find a template or model for service level agreements (SLA).
- Work toward an SLA for the MnGeo image service.
- Articulate the benefits of sharing services and of achieving a
system that effectively supports sharing of services.
- Let federal partners, NSGIC and others know what we are doing. They may have
valuable input or assistance.
Meeting schedule and materials
Calendar: Check the calendar for the date, time and
location of the next workgroup meeting. If none is listed in the next month
or two, check directly with the workgroup chair. All meetings are open to
the public and visitors are always welcome.
Publications and links
MetroGIS Technical Leadership Workgroup or to
MnGeo Standards Committee