M-GIS — Mobile and Interoperable
Access to Geographic Information
Jorge Cardoso1, Artur Rocha1, João Correia Lopes1,2
1 INESC Porto, R. Dr. Roberto Frias, 4200-465 Porto
2 Faculdade de Engenharia da Universidade do Porto
Abstract. This paper describes an architecture which can be used to
access geographic information from mobile devices with limited display
and processing characteristics, such as Personal Digital Assistants (PDA)
or Mobile Phones. The information may come from different sources
leading to an interoperable solution.
M-GIS obtains geographic information from sources described using Ge-
ography Markup Language (GML) from one or more Web Feature Servers
allowing an access independent from its format or physical location, as
long as the information is according to the specification.
Using XSLT, GML is transformed to a graphical format in Scalable Vec-
tor Graphics (SVG) which can then be manipulated in the mobile device.
M-GIS follows a client/server architecture and the client application was
developed using Java Mobile Information Device Profile technology.
The results enable us to conclude that the mobile system, designed and
developed with the use of open standards and representation formats to
access geographic information, is a viable solution with some limitations.
The main limitations of this approach have to do with the amount of
information which the client can, at the moment, accommodate.
The event of web-enhanced portable devices widens the way for a whole new
series of personal and professional applications. It’s becoming a common proce-
dure to download utilities or leisure applications to use in one’s mobile phone or
Personal Digital Assistants (PDA). JAVA enabled platforms have given a broad
contribute to this status quo, due to the one-deployment-fits-all philosophy.
In the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) application field, the potential
has been identified: it’s a world map in the palm of your hand