Common pitfalls for users of OpenLayers

Session Type: 
Tech Session
Marc Jansen, terrestris GmbH & Co. KG

Is it hard to create a map using the JavaScript library OpenLayers? Many would say it is not, yet on mailing lists, IRC or popular question and answer sites (e.g. Stack Overflow) some problems seem to be posted in a regular interval: "My features are all near the equator, but they shouldn't", "Why do I always get pink tiles?", "Why does it say 'Access to restricted URI denied' in my browser?", "How do I build a version of OpenLayers that only includes the parts I need?" etc.

Prior to the talk I will analyze the questions (and corresponding answers) on some of the places users ask for help. Additionally I will add comments and questions I get to hear when I train different target groups working with OpenLayers. The goal of the presentation is to identify some of the common pitfalls non-experienced users of OpenLayers run into. I will briefly present the specific problem that arose, the help the user got and whether official documentation (API documentation, examples, official FAQ etc.) could be used to solve the problem.

Eventually another goal of the talk is to enhance the documentation and/or code of the OpenLayers project where necessary and possible.

The talk is not only addressed to people already using OpenLayers (which maybe are already experiencing problems like the ones mentioned) but also to people considering the use of OpenLayers as mapping library in their project. The broad range of touched aspects will give a good first overview of the capabilities of OpenLayers, regarding both the code itself, the usage of the code in projects and finally the community around it.

Speaker Bio: 

Since 2007 I am working at the German company terrestris as a developer of geospatial web applications where I use all components of the "classical" GIS software stack on a daily basis (emphasis on the frontend). I try to participate in the OpenSource-prject i use; just recently I received trunk commit rights on the JavaScript library OpenLayers. I am one of the two authors of the 2009 published German book about OpenLayers and the usual components of the OpenSource GIS stack.

Schedule info