GEO.ca   Behind the Scenes

Behind the Scenes

GEO.ca is built on leading‑edge geospatial knowledge and technologies. Here, we invite you to explore the tools, applications and APIs that drive GEO.ca. We develop in the open—follow the links for a deep dive on our open‑source technology! It is our goal to provide all Canadians with innovative and adaptive geospatial services.

Our Technologies

Explore this section to learn more about the technologies used to help create and support the GEO.ca web presence.

Search and Discovery

Introducing you to geoCore, our geospatial search and discovery engine.

geoCore is our next generation geospatial search and discovery engine. geoCore transforms traditional metadata inputs into a metadata lake that permits faster, more flexible search functionality. With geoCore working behind the scenes, Canadians can quickly find what they need within our deep collection of geospatial content.

GEO.ca uses a private cloud service provider to deliver data and services to our users. Our search engine technology is built on this cloud storage infrastructure resulting in efficient access and discovery of geospatial content.

The Government of Canada uses the Harmonized North American Profile (HNAP) of ISO 19115 as a metadata standard to ensure quality and facilitate sharing and use of geospatial content; however, GEO.ca recognizes our public users may use varying standards for their metadata. Therefore, we designed the geoCore search engine to work with other metadata standards.

Curious about using geoCore for your own website or application? Learn more about the geoCore API, available on the GEO.ca GitHub.

Map Viewer

Visualize geospatial data with geoView, our interactive map viewer.

geoView, is a map viewer that is easy to use, easy to learn, and quick to load. Based on the open source Leaflet library, a leading open-source JavaScript library for interactive maps, this new viewer provides Canadians with an easily digestible map to visualize geospatial content without needing advanced mapping knowledge.

To learn more about geoView, please visit our GitHub repository.

For our more technical users, GEO.ca provides another advanced viewer, the Reusable Accessible Mapping Platform (RAMP), which can be found through the metadata of our datasets. Learn more about RAMP on GitHub. The table below compares the two viewers to highlight the main differences:

Features

RAMP

geoView 

Mapping Library

ESRI JavaScript API v3.x

Leaflet v1.7

Framework

Angular v1.8

React v17+

Rendering capacity

High

Limited

Authoring tool

Yes

Not needed

Customizable

High

Low

Custom plugin support

Yes

In development

Advanced tools

Yes

Limited

WCAG

2.0 AA

Not tested

Keyboard support

Yes

Yes

Bilingual

Yes

Yes

Load time

Few seconds

Instant

Size

3.6 MB

700 KB

The Cloud

Learn how we host Canada’s geospatial information and technologies on the cloud.

GEO.ca uses a private cloud service provider to deliver data and services our users can rely on. Using globally recognized cloud providers allows GEO.ca to provide our best-in-class services to Canadians in a scalable, flexible way.

As we develop our cloud infrastructure, we’re focusing on leveraging the best‑in‑class technologies available to us, whether open‑source and serverless technologies or from commercial vendors. Our goal is for Canadians to have easy access to content, while reducing the need for it to be duplicated and sourced from multiple locations (e.g., data centres, organizations, hard drives, etc.).

We have migrated many of our technologies and workflows to our geospatially enabled cloud.

The cloud is a low‑maintenance, low‑cost solution for Canadians to access regularly updated information and services from a single location!

Open-Source Communities

Our developers and programmers use open source communities to co-develop and share their creations such as apps, widgets, and more. These open source communities allow collaborating developers to easily work together, download the most up-to-date version of projects, make changes, and upload their revisions. The GEO.ca GitHub is an example of an open source community. All users of an open source community can access and download projects for their own use.

It is important to note that featured open-source websites are not products of the Government of Canada. Content may not be available in both official languages.

Please consult the licence of respective products for usage terms and conditions.