"Count what is countable. Measure what is measureable. What is not measureable, make measureable." -- Galileo

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Plone Products

I recently found a year-old posting on Jon Stahl's blog about the need for objective product reviews. Turns out, I have an excuse to start doing that.

Since I have a customer at work who has a need for a map-centric view of facility data, I'm looking at the various products for GIS integration with Plone. Here's a quick rundown of what's available off-the-shelf at plone.org for geospatial data presentation.

Product Version Most Recent Release Date Days Since Last Update Status
Maps 1.1 9/5/2007 87 Active
PloneWorldKit 0.2 5/5/2007 210 Torpid
Plone Place Map 0.10 2/21/2007 283 Torpid
Plone Google Maps 0.2 9/28/2006 429 Moribund
AT Google Maps 0.5 7/19/2006 500 Moribund
GeoLocation 0.3 6/9/2006 540 Moribund
MapLocation 0.1b41r3 3/13/2006 628 Moribund
PrimaGIS 0.5.1 2/18/2006 651 Moribund

I've defined 'torpid' as a product without a major stable release and no activity within the last six months. 'Moribund' here means no major stable release and no activity for over a year. As I work my way through actual installation and use, I'll have genuine, objective remarks to make.

I may add Pleiades Geocoder and OpenLayers after I take a look at them. PrimaGIS may get elevated--if I can get it installed on my Windows testbed (sheesh, what a mess of dependencies). I saw the demo/tutorial at World Plone 2006 in Seattle, but have never gotten it to run for myself.

I'm tending not to favor the products that use the GoogleEarth api at first blush. The project is an internal application and so would need the Enterprise version of GoogleEarth if we went that way. Right now I'm thinking PloneWorldKit or PrimaGIS would do the trick.

PloneWorldKit works fine on our 2.5.3 production server, but doesn't install on a 3.0.3 testbed. Something about not finding the AddPortalContent permissions, but the fix for CMFCore.permissions syntax doesn't solve the problem. Also, the annotation capability for PloneWorldKit is very rough around the edges.

More on this as I dig into deeper levels of these products.

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