Monday, April 19, 2010

Mapping Boundaries Upgrade


Ever wished you could draw a diagram on a map with a few clicks?  Wish that you could show your board members the relationship between needs and assets across your community visually?  Well, part of the much larger upgrade being released this week allows authorized users to create their own mapping boundaries--for nearly any purpose.  Need to outline the boundaries of the school districts in your service area?  Perhaps the police jurisdictions?  The service areas for larger nonprofits? An eligibility boundary for a state or locally funded initiative?  All this and more is now just a couple clicks away.

Integrated with the Resource Directory in CommunityOS, these mapping tools become even more valuable as clients and community resources can be visually presented.  And for those who asked us to include basic US Census Bureau data, now you can, with a click.

To create mapping boundary displays, an authorized user has three choices:  1) import a standards-based mapping data file; 2) import GIS coordinates directly; or, 3 simply point and click across a map to create appropriate boundaries.  Create many boundaries, name them appropriately, link them to web resources (or content inside VisionLink's CommunityOS solution) and more.

The Mapping Boundaries module is also VisionLink Portal compliant, so this means that authorized users can create different sets of mapping boundaries for different portals, deployed for different purposes.  So--across a community or state, we offer single-system integrated GIS solutions, yet deployable in a manner that presents the right map to the appropriate users.

Keeping it simple:  While it is harder to build, we have constructed this solution so that no third party software or browser plug-ins are required.  All this just works inside standard browsers, making it easy to use and deploy.  Next time you have a board or funder presentation, let's use graphically displayed information on Maps!