Almost every single government entity is looking to deliver contextual information on maps, so this reusable framework built by our partner iLink Systems can help deliver a great experience to the end-users.
Reusable Framework for GIS Mapping Applications/Solutions
Partner iLink Systems has come up with a great framework and solution built with Silverlight 3 hosted on Windows Azure platform, consumes data stored in SQL Azure (cloud database) and uses Bing Maps for the visualization.
You can access the sample solution built using their framework at http://mapapp.cloudapp.net. Sample may be available only for a month or so, but feel free to send a note to email@example.com to learn more about their framework and discuss how your state/agency can utilize it to deliver ton of GIS mapping based solutions for one or multiple departments.
Sample mapping solution http://mapapp.cloudapp.net is about fictitious county/city showing contextual information (e.g. offices/locations where govt services are offered, etc) on Bing Maps, but their framework can be used to create any GIS mapping application pretty easily. Solution not only has a rich user-experience and accessible on all modern browsers (via the Silverlight plug-in), but the cool thing is that the end-user can install shortcut of the application on their desktop and/or start menu of Windows OS (Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7) by simply using right-click on the application’s canvas/surface.
Partner chose Windows Azure platform simply because the data shown on the maps is for the public, however your solution/application built using their framework can be hosted on your on-premise infrastructure too. Once you get hold of the framework, you will be pleased that the application can talk to on-premise SQL Server database or cloud-resident SQL Azure database with simple change in the database connection string (stored in the web configuration file).
Some background about the technologies leveraged in their framework
- Microsoft Silverlight – Silverlight is Microsoft’s RIA (Rich Internet Application) platform. It helps .NET developers leverage their existing skills to deliver both rich media (audio/video) solutions and Rich Internet Applications (RIA) that work in all modern browsers (Microsoft Internet Explorer, Mozilla FireFox, Google Chrome, Apple Safari, etc). You can check-out Silverlight related articles, video-tutorials, gallery on the community site http://silvelight.net Silverlight is currently in version 3, but beta of Silverlight 4 is also available at the community site.
- Silverlight based control for Bing Maps – In Nov/Dec 2009, we also released Silverlight based control for Bing Maps so that any customer can use Silverlight to deliver rich mapping applications with Bing Maps. Control is available here and interactive sdk is here
- Bing Maps – One can visit Bing Maps Account Center to get started with Bing Maps
- Windows Azure and SQL Azure – You can visit the homepage here and download “December 2009 version” of Windows Azure Platform Training Kit
You can check out their sample solution http://mapapp.cloudapp.net, but I have listed couple of screen-shots.
Hope this gives you some ideas to leverage Silverlight (RIA platform) and Windows Azure & deliver cost-effective and better user experience in your applications/solutions.
Pls send a note firstname.lastname@example.org if you need to get hold of their reusable framework.