Work in progress.
All we need to understand and test GeoView.
- 1 Why GeoView or Geography ?
- 2 Installation
- 3 The html kits
- 4 Supported longitude/latitude formats
- 5 The maps providers
- 6 mapstraction
- 7 The provider Key
- 8 The proxies
- 9 How to get the HTML kits ?
- 10 Creating new places from GeoView
- 11 Associate a new position to an already existing place
- 12 ...
- 13 Results
- 14 If you get a crash when starting gramps
Why GeoView or Geography ?
I would like to see my ancestors all around the world on a map. And if possible, I would like to see them moving during time periods.
Geoview is divided in two parts :
The html rendering engine
The Geographic part
How to do this easily and with the minimum of software to install ?
GeoView is one solution. In GRAMPS 3.1.x it is present as an experimental view you can activate. For GeoView to work you need to:
- change the GRAMPS configuration file to list the view in the list of views
- install the required backend so you can see webpages inside of GRAMPS.
- set the GeoView Preferences
- use the appropriate latidude and longitude format in your data (Note: the Place completion tool can look up latitude and longitude of the places defined in GRAMPS.)
The first is simple to achieve. Start a text editor and go to your gramps home directory, and open the keys.ini file. Scoll down to the interface section, and look for the data-views variable. On a clean install of GRAMPS, this variable is normally:
To add GeoView, just add it to the back, so your configuration reads:
To install the backend, scroll down to the installation section.
Finally, you need to set the Geoview Preferences:
The html kits
The Geoview shows internet map services inside of GRAMPS with your genealogical data marked. Although there is no visual web browsing, that is what GRAMPS is actually doing, so we need to be connected to the network. You probably also need a broadband connection to have a smooth result. Try eg Google maps in your browser to see if your internet connection is sufficiently fast.
GRAMPS can use two different kind of engines, webkit or gtkmozembed, to view HTML pages. If they are not installed, you'll never see GeoView appearing among your views. If you are looking on how to install these, see below
If both two kits are installed, webkit will be used.
Even if you have a HTML kit installed, you can always say : I don't mind ! I don't want to see the GeoView. For this, you can disallow Geoview in the Internet Maps preferences tab.
Be aware, WebKit is always in development.
More and more projects are integrating webkit ... Eg, epiphany states:
WebKit uses the libsoup library. You need to set the environment variable http_proxy.
Gecko ( GtkMozEmbed )
What will gtkmozembed be in the future ?
The embedding API of Gecko (GtkMozEmbed) has been unmaintained and stagnant for a long time.
GtkMozEmbed is proxy aware. I implement this and I use the http_proxy environment variable. Authentication is allowed. The http_proxy format used is :
To confirm : You need to use gnome-control-center to set the proxy.
Supported longitude/latitude formats
When you create/modify a place, the possible formats used for longitude/latitude are :
'D.D4' : degree notation, 4 decimals eg +12.0154 , -124.3647 'D.D8' : degree notation, 8 decimals (precision like ISO-DMS) eg +12.01543265 , -124.36473268 'DEG' : degree, minutes, seconds notation eg 50°52'21.92"N , 124°52'21.92"E ° has UTF-8 code c2b00a or N 50º52'21.92" , E 124º52'21.92" º has UTF-8 code c2ba0a The character for seconds can be either one double quote " or two single quote ' 'DEG-:' : degree, minutes, seconds notation with : eg -50:52:21.92 , 124:52:21.92 'ISO-D' : ISO 6709 degree notation i.e. ±DD.DDDD±DDD.DDDD 'ISO-DM' : ISO 6709 degree, minutes notation i.e. ±DDMM.MMM±DDDMM.MMM 'ISO-DMS' : ISO 6709 degree, minutes, seconds notation i.e. ±DDMMSS.SS±DDDMMSS.SS
The maps providers
There are a lot of providers. Some are free.
By default, the provider GRAMPS uses is OSM ( OpenStreetMap ). As a free project, we find it our duty to first and foremost support another free initiative.
OpenStreetMap depends on the community and the maps are very light depending on the country. Nevertheless, the community made an extraordinary job and the quality is improving rapidly. And you can help make it better! We can say OpenStreetMap is and will be the map GRAMPS uses per default.
Openlayers is free too and uses by default OSM map. A lot of private or non free maps depends on OpenLayers.
The most interesting is the IGN ( Institut Géographique National Français ) which offers an old map of France ( about 1780 ) but this provider needs a key. I'll speak about keys later.
Then you have Googlemaps, Yahoo! maps, Microsoft maps, ...
Like you can see, it's impossible to implement all providers maps. For this reason, some people created an api over all these providers api.
With only a few modification, you can use the map you want. And better! you can switch between the maps keeping the zoom and the centered position.
For performances issues, I can confirm it takes approximately 30 seconds to view 1000 markers for openstreetmap or google. If you have 2000 markers, this time is about 2 times 30 seconds.
For this, I limit one HTML page to 200 markers. If you have more than this limit, GRAMPS creates the necessary pages to see all your markers.
During testing with a places database for France ( > 35000 markers ), I set the limit to 20 markers which permit to create 1760 pages without problems. So we can say we have an unlimited number of markers. Only the file system space will limit us.
The provider Key
GRAMPS is not a web site. Keys are mostly only for web sites. In GeoView, I use a specific functionality : we are working on a local file instead of an url, so we normally don't need a key.
However, some providers like IGN need a key even in those cases. So we can't use them. Why ?
- To require a key would be too complex for the normal GRAMPS user
- We need a key from the provider
We hope it is understood that our choice of maps is limited even if mapstraction can do more.
We have no key, so we have a restricted access : About 10,000 to 15,000 requests by IP per day depending on the provider.
What is a request ? As I understand with the IGN ( OpenLayers ), a request is a tile ( an image ). You need several tiles for a view.
I think it is sufficient for the lambda genealogist.
Most people don't need a proxy. The majority of us are connected directly to internet. In this case, forget all this.
You need a proxy only if you installed one or if you depend on some internet providers.
How to get the HTML kits ?
It depends on the distribution you're working on ! They are listed in reverse order.
python-webkitgtk is also called pywebkitgtk
You need libwebkit and python-webkitgtk.
Add to the /etc/apt/sources.list :
# for python-webkitgtk deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/gwibber-team/ubuntu hardy main # for libwebkit deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/webkit-team/ubuntu hardy main
It's from nightly builds, so it can crash.
If you have some crash and want to install the working package, you can get libwebkit from the following url :
If you want gtkmozembed on ubuntu, you must install : python-gnome2-extras
It's stable but installs many gnome packages even if you are on a KDE based distribution. If you installed the Ubuntu GRAMPS package you already have this package as it contains the spell checking GRAMPS uses. However, there is an open bug with debian/ubuntu to split this mega package as gtkmozembed and spelling don't need the other GNOME components, so these package names might change in the future.
I didn't test GeoView on suse or opensuse. I need some feedback.
I found on example in : ftp5.gwdg.de/pub/opensuse/repositories/home:/bmotmans/openSUSE_<VERSION>/<ARCH>/
Replace <VERSION> by the fedora version you use. ie : Factory, 10.3, 1.0, ...
Replace <ARCH> by i586, x86_64, ...
for 2009.0 and 2009.1: Use the package manager and install pyhon-webkitgtk
Seems not to work. Causes segmentation fault.
You must use : WebKit-gtk
yum install WebKit-gtk pywebkitgtk
This is the same packager for ubuntu and debian, so go to the ubuntu paragraph.
install the python-gtkmozembed package.
- WebKitGTK is the port of the portable web rendering engine WebKit to the GTK+ platform on Windows. This zip file contains webkitgtk itself and all needed dynamic link libraryes (DLL). You will need 7zip to extract its contents
This file is highly experimental and all functions may not work as expected!
- PyWebKitGtk provide Python bindings to WebKitGTK
This is standard on MAC. Can someone confirm this. Is there a python-webkit package on MAC ?
Creating new places from GeoView
You center the map for the place you want to create. You can use the double click for that. When you are sure the position is OK, click on the "+" button in the tools bar. Now, the place editor is opened. Enter all the field necessary for this new place then click on the OK button. That's all.
Associate a new position to an already existing place
You center the map for the place you want to modify like for creating a new place. When you are sure the position is OK, click on the "map" button in the tools near the "+" button described above. A places list is opened. Choose the place you want to modify then click on the OK button.
You can use this method to modify the position you used in a prior creation.
Your modifications are welcomed ...
If you get a crash when starting gramps
It's probably a webkit problem. So, you have two possibilities :
Remove webkit rendering engine only
Remove webkit and install gtkmozembed (gecko) is not already installed You'll have the gecko rendering.
Remove all rendering engines
Remove python-webkit and python-gtkmozembed. You'll never see geoview.