Abstract of presentation proposal on GPS tracking using SVG, for the 2002 SVG Open Developers Conference.


Web site :
The Product:
Richard Bennett
GRI Technologies LLC
Web-Owl, an online/offline GPS reporting system, tracking vehicles progress over a map in real-time.


The whole presentation could be split into two sections, a theoretical one, outlining the various technologies , and the mathematical, and programmatorical techniques used to achieve live online GPS plotting over a map using SVG, and a second section, showing the practical application of these techniques, with live product demonstrations, and a discussion around the various ways this technology can be applied to real-world situations.
Please advise if these should be split into two completely separate sections, or condensed into one 25 minute presentation.

I would start with a short overview of the different technologies used, why we choose them, and what end-result we hope to achieve:


  • Hardware: Just a passing mention of the GPS hardware used, and how the data is transferred to the server, and stored in the database.
  • Software, back-end: A quick mention of: Apache servers running on an OpenBSD UNIX operating system, and a mySQL database, remote administered using SSH.
  • Software, front-end: Some details on how and why SVG(Adobe ASV3 viewer) was combined with DynAPI, an open source DHTML library (http://dynapi.sourceforge.net/dynapi/), to achieve the required result, as opposed to using SVG alone, a Java Applet, or Flash.
    Maybe also a mention of how IEs proprietary features can enable SVG to function inside Windows applications, and web-applications alike.
  • The Theory:

  • A quick look at coordinate systems in SVG mapping, (inverted y axis, and the scaling of maps)
  • How we can use light-weight math in javascript to make an approximate Lon/Lat to feet conversion
  • How viewBox works, and how we can use it to locate a particular place on the globe in our SVG file.
  • Which transformations are available in SVG, and how we can use them to fine-tune our SVG Map projections.
  • Demonstrate the two ways we have of translating a chain of translations to a matrix (mathematically, or using SVGMatrix)
    This would include demonstrating a map-alignment tool, which loads raster or vector maps, and allows you to apply various transformations in order to align the map to several coordinates from the GPS hardware. The final output is a matrix, which can be hard-coded into the map files.
  • The use of raster and vector-maps in SVG, and the advantages of each , and how we can combine and layer these to show aerial-photography, detailed maps, and interactive map objects.
  • Time permitting, it would be nice to touch on how smaller aerial-photographs can be loaded on the fly, while the view-box pans, to avoid loading extremely large images.
  • The Practical Application:

  • The WebOwl GPS tracking application would be shown, using live feeds, if available, or pre-recorded streaming feeds.
  • A short discussion on how the various theoretical elements have been brought together in the software.
  • A Demonstration of various other ways this technology could be used, using demos and/or slides.
  • Requirements:

    Computer (500mhz+ 128MB ram+)
    Windows(2000/98/NT or ME)
    Internet Explorer 5.5 or 6
    Fast internet access
    Permission to install software from CD. (+-7 MB)