MapStore Release 2021.02.00

Dear Reader,

We are pleased to announce the new release 2021.02.00 of MapStore, our flagship Open Source WebGIS product. The full list of changes for this release can be found here. This blog highlights the most interesting ones. Beware, the list of new features is really interesting!

Important changes for this release

This release comes with lots of new functionalities and capabilities, the most important ones being listed below:

  • Review of the theme system: the support for custom themes in MapStore has been reviewed and improved to allow you to easily override the default theme and to allow you to provide more predefined themes in the build ready to be selected for an application context as alternatives
  • Context Theme: the application context system now allows to customize the theme of each context, in a dedicated step of the context creation wizard
  • GeoCarousel Section for GeoStory: GeoStory has been enhanced with a new interesting section type to provide a new kind of immersive experience for your story
  • Raster Styler: also raster layers styles can be now classified through the Visual Style Editor as well as you can do with vector layers
  • Performance improvements: we have reduced the bundle size making the initial loading time faster

Other minor enhancements to the existing MapStore capabilities have also been included:

  • We added the UniqueInterval classification method for both raster and vector styles
  • We improved the GeoLocate tool enriching its capabilities by displaying the direction with a configurable speed threshold
  • We enhanced the Catalog tool advanced options with new options for CSW sources through the addition of a configurable static and dynamic filters to improve and refine searching capabilities
  • We added the autocomplete function to the Filter layer capabilities (cross layer filtering section) to improve the user experience a lot
  • We added the catalog service selector also to dashboards to improve the user experience in configuring new widgets with data from different sources
  • We also performed a lot of other minor improvements and hardening to existing functionalities (involving UI and more) along with useful bug fixes

The Migration guidelines are available as usual in the online documentation so that you can easily keep your MapStore project up to date.

Let us now provide more details on the main updates described above.

MapStore Theme System

What an amazing new feature has finally landed in MapStore! The MapStore theme system has been significantly improved to enhance the management of themes. The support for custom themes has been also reviewed and improved to easily override the default theme of MapStore and to provide multiple themes to be selected for a context. The Application Context system has now a further step in the wizard where it is possible to select one of the predefined themes and customize it through the UI by leveraging on the CSS variable support.

MapStore Theme

Application Context, customization of the theme


GeoCarousel section for GeoStory

GeoStory has also been improved through a new type of interesting and powerful section aimed at providing a new type of immersive experience and therefore improving the user experience of telling stories with MapStore. The GeoCarousel section allows the story editor to define his map points of interest through the definition of a list of carousel cards to be presented with an accompanying descriptive content and a geographic location.

Visual Style Editor

The Visual Style Editor of MapStore has now the ability to provide style classifications capabilities also for raster styles including the ability to manage classification rules from the UI.

Performance Improvements

Various optimizations on library loading have been applied and the general loading time improved to make MapStore faster through Tree Shaking an Lazy Loading mechanism. Furthermore, the MapStore build has now resolved previous resource consumption issues.

  • The bundle size has been reduced of 23% (15% gzipped)
  • Initial page load few second faster
  • Now building MapStore does not require a lot of memory and it is much faster (NODE_OPTIONS=--max_old_space_size=4096 can be removed from build)

Performances improvements

Other Enhancements

As part of this major release a lot of other minor enhancements have been also included; the complete list can be found here in github. Here we are going to highlight the most relevant ones.

  • The styling capabilities for the classification of styles have been improved with the inclusion of an additional classification method (UniqueInterval) that is available for both vector and raster styles. This method allows to classify each distinct attribute value of your dataset

UniqueInterval classification method

  • The user experience for mobile device has been enhanced a bit with the GeoLocate tool that now shows the direction in the map while the subject is moving. Further improvements will be provided in future releases so that also the orientation will be managed accordingly
GeoLocate with direction

GeoLocate with direction

  • Through the latest improvement of the Catalog tool it is now possible to perform more refined searches on CSW catalogs by configuring appropriate filters to better suit your needs
csw search

Filtering CSW searches

  • The Filter layer tool now helps the user in performing cross layer filtering operations with a considerable benefit for the general usability and also a better user experience
layer filter autocomplete

Cross Layer Filtering, Autocomplete

  • It is finally possible to add new catalog sources through the dashboard UI
Catalog Tool in Dashboards

Catalog Tool in Dashboards

Ongoing and future work

For the next releases we are working on the following functionalities (in sparse order):

  • Improvements for chars to better manage long labels, chart legends and other cosmetic enhancements. All of this will be available as part of the next minor release v2021.02.01
  • New charts types, like multilvariable and stacked bar charts along with chart theming capabilities that will be available in the next major release v2022.01.00
  • Improvements to the MapStore SDK to simplify the life of developers creating downstream projects like the GeoNode integration.
  • General improvements for MapStore downstream projects to simplify and enhance the management and maintenance of MapStore based project
  • MapStore integration in GeoNode: more improvements and new features to integrate Dashboards and more
  • 3D tiles support, Cesium library update and support to manage 3D tiles layers and styling
  • Performances and more, enhancements are expected in 2022 to further improve the loading time of MapStore pages and themes and also other new features will be available. Stay tuned!

If you want to play with the current release, you can access the live demo here and login with username demo and password 123demoUser.

If you are interested in learning more about how we can help you develop a WebGIS using MapStore or help you achieve your needs with MapStore, GeoServerGeoNode and GeoNetwork through our Enterprise Support Services, Professional Training Services and Subscription Services  please contact us!

The GeoSolutions team,