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Authors of
Prof. Dr. V.J. Dietrich
Institute for Mineralogy and Petrography
ETH Zürich

Prof. Dr. Lorenz Hurni
Institute of Cartography
ETH Zürich

The GEOWARN Design > The New GEOWARN Multimedia Information System

The New GEOWARN Multimedia Information System


Fig. 40 The general scheme of the "Component-Based Framework for Interactive Maps" client software architecture. Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETHZ)
(Click on image to enlarge).

The new GEOWARN Multimedia Information System software was developed within the GEOWARN project and is based on a "client-server" concept. A server handles the distribution of data and functionalities, and the server side part of the software has access to two complementary data models: the Digital Landscape Model (DLM) and the Digital Cartographic Model (DCM).

The landscape model incorporates all GIS data, while the cartographic model contains the cartographically treated data. The latter model is partially derived from the former. In addition, the server controls the access rights of the different users, manages the transactions of data requests, and handles connections to other Web servers.

The final software solution for the GEOWARN project is an internet-based cartographic multimedia software containing custom-programmed GIS tools implemented for volcanologic data analysis (maps, locations, and time series data). This provides a high-quality tool for analysis and monitoring.

Although GIS software packages represent the standard basis for data processing, several reasons were the driving force towards a multimedia internet application solution with GIS implemented tools:

1) the ability to offer a high quality cartographic representation of the entire data set;

2) the ability to provide a "user-friendly" analysis platform for researchers and general users;

3) the ability to be able to control in detail all software components and to assure further stable application developments including high-quality network access (speed and data representation);

4) the possibility to create a European software platform independent of commercial GIS software packages.

The GEOWARN software is based on a Java™ "bean" component concept, where a "bean manager" can manipulate various "bean" applications. As a result, the user-interface application is composed of a Map Viewer (SVG, VMRL, ..) and the "bean" user-interface.

The software is written in Java(tm) Enterprise Edition 2. The server architecture is based on existing models, however, the design of the client application represents a new improvement. Following the needs of each GEOWARN user (research, decision-making, information), the client is working locally with a software architecture similar to the server.

The client is able to access and load the application corresponding to his profile from the server, following a "deployment descriptor". Located on the server, the deployment descriptor defines the data and the tools (= beans) that can be accessed by the various users.

The general scheme of the client software architecture, called "Component-Based Framework for Interactive Maps", is presented in Figure 40. The main reason for adopting this solution is to have the possibility to speed up certain large applications during the analysis of GEOWARN data while retaining server contact through the Internet.


Fig. 41 Example of the functionality of the client application, here in the case of monitored parameters of three hot springs for a given time period. Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETHZ)
(Click on image to enlarge).




Several methodologies are applied in a completely new way to achieve the necessary results.

Software screenshots

Take a look at the software graphical user interface.



Watch illustrative movies of the project.

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