ThinkGeo’s Cloud Maps Spatial Query Service is a data allocation haven. With it, you can free-draw, set lines and/or polygon contours for any portion of ThinkGeo’s World Maps and then extract a bevy of spatially-related data. For example: if your input shape contains waterways, buildings, railways, points of interest, etc., you can
query them and get instant highlighted results from your search. Through our demo center, users can experiment with a variety of layers and query types to customize their experience and they can even set their max results to a custom value.
Spatial querying is a powerful tool that helps you make decisions based on geographic relationships between different features. Some good examples of spatial querying might be the need to know the coverage area for mobile network reception or the proximity of possible hazardous materials to schools so that building plans can be made accordingly, plus many more use cases.
Our hands-on demo allows users to toggle between three drawing type options to get varying query results: Points, Lines and Polygons, each of which is most useful for different types of queries. For instance, using the Point shape type makes sense if users want to collect information surrounding or near to one specific place. Using Line makes sense if someone wants to locate features along a route or a path, and Polygon would be used when a larger area is the use case.
Once you know which drawing shape you want, have fun experimenting with the various Query Layers and Query Types included in the sample. To draw a custom shape onto the map, start by selecting Polygon as the shape type; left clicking on the map will set a starting point and then you can begin to draw your custom polygon by clicking to place a new corner. Finish drawing by double-clicking or selecting the first point once again. Finally, pressing the Query button will get you the results.
Let’s take a look at some of the query types that you can achieve with our sample and why they’re worth checking out!
- Within: Selects only those features that are completely enclosed by your query polygon.
- Containing: This returns any area(s) that completely enclose your query feature.
- Intersecting: Returns those features where any part of them is shared with your query shape.
- Overlapping: Selects only the features that overlap your query shape. For instance, if you draw a polygon, only the features that touch the polygon’s edges will be returned.
- Nearest: Returns the specified number of features that are spatially closest to your query shape. It makes sense to use this with a point-based query shape as it will return features nearest to that point.
- Within Distance: Useful for routes; will return features within a desired distance of a point, line or area.
ThinkGeo’s Maps Query Service is a versatile tool that can complement many mapping projects. We’re eager to share the range of application use cases over coming weeks and hope to see innovative uses from everyone who gets their hands on it. As is the case with all ThinkGeo Cloud Services, the Cloud Maps Query API can be accessed via a 60-day free ThinkGeo Cloud evaluation.