GeoWebCache 1.0 and Google Summer of Code

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

OpenGeo and the GeoWebCache team are pleased to announce the release of version 1.0 (download). GeoWebCache is a tile cache for web mapping servers designed to significantly improve the performance of your service and provide easy integration with software such as OpenLayers, Google Maps, Microsoft Virtual Earth and Google Earth. The response time for cached tiles is measured in milliseconds, making it possible to serve hundreds of simultaneous clients using modest hardware.

GeoWebCache has benefited greatly from contributions resulting from the Google Summer of Code™ program. In 2007, Chris Whitney developed jTileCache, the starting point from which GeoWebCache has gradually evolved. This year, Marius Suta, primarily focused on a REST API for configuration, spent the summer on GeoWebCache, and the resulting functionality is available in our 1.0 release. GeoWebCache also underwent improvements to cache KML with support from Google's Open Source Programs Office as part of a project to enable GeoServer to make placemarks and vector data available through Super Overlays. The new Google Earth functionality in GeoServer can be seen in version 1.7.1, which ships with an integrated GeoWebCache.

GeoWebCache will continue to evolve at a rapid pace with a continually growing open source community. Planned features include the ability to let users specify what WMS parameters can be varied by the clients, so that each layer can forward filters and support multiple sets of tiles. Also, steps are being taken to enable GeoWebCache to automatically expire tiles as the data changes on the backend or styles are modified. To facilitate these features, storage of tiles and meta information will be improved. A nice, AJAX based frontend for tasks such as configuration, seeding and testing the layers is also in the works.