Tuesday, October 16, 2007


Some of the development of MapServer is coordinated through IRC. This page describes how you log on to chat, ask questions, and hack around with the developers.

Why IRC?

IRC is a primary medium where Open Source GIS hackers congregate, collaborate, and hack. It makes it easy to communicate things like compilation issues, where immediate, iterative feedback allows folks to make a lot of progress. Something that might take days of heavily-quoted emails through a maillist might only take fifteen minutes on IRC.

IRC is a great way to coordinate on-line meetings. Much of the discussion about the development of the new MapServer website was coordinated through IRC.

Some folks find IRC distracting and do not normally participate except for on-line meetings.

How do I join?

Chatzilla is probably the easiest way to get going. Chatzilla works with Mozilla or Firefox, and once you have it installed, you can log on to the channel by pointing your browser at:


There are many other IRC clients available. This page provides a good listing for many different platforms.


GIShosting.net provides specialized hosting services in GIS industry with open source software solutions : Mapserver, PHP/MapScript , PostGIS, etc. It's primary value proposition is to eliminate the complexity of the underlying software installation and maintenance, and help the customer in focusing on the real business.

We offer three basic hosting plans:

In addition to GIS solution, hosting plans also includes email accounts, secured shell access, databases, and plethora of other solutions normally needed by most businesses to maintain an internet presence.

Census / Google Maps Mashup

This page links to maps that combine U.S. Census Bureau information with Google Maps; the Mapeteria service allows you to map your own data.

See my FAQ and my blog entries about maps.

These maps let you flip between a number of different, related, demographic maps.

  • Race and density: population density, percent White, Black, Latino, Asian, Hawai'ian/Pacific Islander, Native American
  • Age distribution: median age and age groups
  • Housing units: percent occupied, vacant, owner-occupied, rentals
  • Household composition: percent single men without kids, single women without kids, single men with kids, single women with kids, married couples with kids, married couples without kids

Other maps:

If you want to roll your own map, see the expert mode form.

There are some strangenesses in the data.