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The OGC API – Tiles specification enables Web APIs to quickly and efficiently serve tiles of spatially referenced data or of maps with predefined content, extent, and resolution.
The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) seeks public comment on the candidate OGC API – Tiles – Part 1: Core Standard. Comments are due by April 29, 2022.
OGC API – Tiles uses the latest technologies and spatial data on the web best practices to enable Web APIs to serve tiles of spatially referenced data or of maps. The candidate standard offers additional functionality beyond that offered by the Web Map Tile Service (WMTS) – a well-established and commonly implemented OGC standard first issued in 2007.
OGC API Standards are developed in a modular way, meaning that their functionality can be added to existing web APIs as desired. This is why we call the family of OGC API Standards the “Building Blocks For Location.”
The candidate OGC API – Tiles specification, therefore, describes the API building blocks that can enable existing OGC API implementations (as well as other Web APIs) to efficiently serve tiles of spatially referenced data or of maps with predefined content, extent, and resolution.
As with other OGC API Standards, OGC API – Tiles is delivered in ‘Parts’ that allow developers to pick and choose the functionality they want in the API they are building. This minimizes complexity and development time, and allows future use-cases and technology changes to be added to the Standard as new parts without breaking existing implementations. Part 1: Core provides the minimum functionality required for a Web API to successfully serve spatially-referenced tiles to a client for the most common use-cases.
The candidate OGC API – Tiles – Part 1: Core Standard defines how to: discover which resources offered by a Web API can be retrieved as tiles; get metadata about the available tile sets; and request a tile. Tiles can represent a single collection or multiple collections, as defined in the Web API.
Additionally, the core conformance class describes how to retrieve a tile of an arbitrary resource using tile indices. It is defined in a way that could be easily included in a web API that does not conform to the foundational OGC API – Common standard. A web API can combine some requirements classes of this candidate OGC API standard with other OGC API standards (including OGC API – Common) to add functionality to said web API.
The candidate OGC API – Tiles Standard leverages the concepts of tile matrix sets and tile sets defined in the candidate OGC Two Dimensional Tile Matrix Set and Tile Set Metadata Standard, also implicitly used in WMTS and GeoPackage. The candidate OGC API – Tiles Standard can, therefore, be used to publish tiled maps (e.g., PNG, JPEG), tiled feature data (e.g., GeoJSON Vector Tiles, Mapbox Vector Tiles), or tiled coverages (e.g., netCDF, GeoTIFF).
To learn more about how the family of OGC API Standards work together to provide modular “building blocks for location” that address both simple and the most complex use-cases, visit ogcapi.org.
OGC Members interested in staying up to date on the progress of this standard, or contributing to its development, are encouraged to join the OGC API – Tiles SWG via the OGC Portal.
The candidate OGC API Tiles – Part 1: Core Standard is now open for public review and comment. Comments are due by April 29, 2022, and should be submitted via the OGC API Tiles – Part 1: Core Standard’s public GitHub Repository.
The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) is a collective problem-solving community of experts from more than 500 businesses, government agencies, research organizations, and universities driven to make geospatial (location) information and services FAIR – Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable.
The global OGC Community engages in a mix of activities related to location-based technologies: developing consensus-based open standards and best-practice; collaborating on agile innovation initiatives; engaging in community meetings, events, and workshops; and more.
OGC’s unique standards development process moves at the pace of innovation, with constant input from technology forecasting, practical prototyping, real-world testing, and community engagement.
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