The following chapter will try to bring the Knowledge Hub web GIS application closer to a non-specialist by walking the reader through the process of
- creating necessary layer and its data model on the Knowledge Hub,
- adding the data through web application,
- editing it,
- sharing it with others and giving permissions to general public to input data.
A typical use case
Let us imagine that John, who is an enthusiasts in pharology , would like to share his knowledge of lighthouses in Cork County area in Ireland. He has heard about Knowledge Hub, and decided to try it out.
He has successfully logged in with his Google account, and is now ready to input the data. Unfortunately, before he can start adding information on all the lighthouses (data), he has to create a proper placeholder for it and decide what kind of geometric and descriptive data it will hold. In the nomenclature of Knowledge Hub, he has to set up data model for his new vector layer.
In fact, John has a vision of a map with small lighthouse symbols on it showing the positions of the lighthouses, where the symbol colour changes depending on the lighthouse being operational or not. Each lighthouse should hold additional information:
- the name of the lighthouse,
- its description (could be longer text, preferably “rich” - having links to other web pages, etc.),
- date when the lighthouse started operating,
- date when the lighthouse stopped operating (if it is not operational anymore),
- few photos, since he has quite an archive of them.
New layer wizard.
John inputs the name of the layer, decides to make a layer of points (corresponding to each lighthouse's location), and decides that it will be queryable and that he will have a legend. At the moment he does not want to share his data, so he leaves the permissions in default settings (not allowed), but adds some description, just to get the hang of it. Upon clicking “Next”, he is moved from “General” to “Fields” tab, where he has to specify what kind of additional information his layer will hold. Since he decided beforehand, adding fields is quite straightforward, as shown in pictures.
Lighthouse field for name (which he thinks should be mandatory), is just (long) text.
For description field he chose rich text (text that can be marked up).
Both starting and ending date of operating should be of type date, but while starting date should be
mandatory, John does not make end date mandatory, since the lighthouse can still be operational.
He decides that at 5 photos should be enough to convey a sense of place and show the lighthouse in
On a whim John decides to make another field for additional pdf documents, perhaps he finally has a
reason to put together the navigational aids he has thought of compiling.
Satisfied, he picks “Lighthouse” field as field for showing and moves on to “Style” by clicking on “Next” button.
Style tab in new layer wizard.
He is thrilled that there is an actual lighthouse symbol already available, and picks a colour. He notices the “Advanced editor” and “Edit legend” buttons, but itchy to start adding information, he decides he will check them out later, and moves on to copyrights, where he chooses an existing copyright (Sinergise, d.o.o.) to see what will that do. At the end, he clicks “Save” button.
Now he has additional layer in the list of layers (“Content” tab) in left side-bar.
Newly created layer is added to the content tab.
By clicking on “i” symbol, he gets the information about the layer, but it is the symbol just left to it that he is itching to try: it says “Add point” when he moves the mouse over it. A click on a map (on the approximate position of the lighthouse on a map), some typing, and John is almost finished.
Adding new point on map and additional data in left sidebar of the application.
He has the photos on another computer, but he is sure that he will be able to add the photos at a later time. Saving the data, changing the underlying map and zooming out, he is happy with his first input to Knowledge Hub – Sheeps Head lighthouse marking the southern tip of Bantry Bay.
Upon clicking on the lighthouse icon, John can view how others will see his entry.
Later next day John decides to add a legend. He opens “Content” tab, and clicks on “i” (info) button next to “Lighthouses” and then in “Layer” tab sees his layer information
Layer tab shows the information about layer, and “Pencil” button to start editing.
He clicks on the “pencil” button to edit his layer and in “General” tab finds the “Edit legend” button and adds two entries to his legend: a coloured lighthouse symbol for operational lighthouse and a black one for non-operational lighthouses.
Now the layer information also has a nice legend, making the map a bit nicer to read.
Layer tab shows with the new legend.
In the evening he meets his lighthouses-enthusiastic friends and quite happy with his work on Knowledge Hub, tells them about it. He not surprised that they wanted to contribute themselves. So upon arriving home, he logs to the Knowledge Hub and edits the layer again. He sets the permissions to “Edit data” and then shares the link via e-mail. His friends can now, upon registering and logging in to the Knowledge Hub, help build him a proper map of lighthouses. Hurrah!
Share link panel. Reader can try to add an example himself here.
Let’s now imagine John and his friends vigorously adding content. After few months, almost all the Ireland's lighthouses have been added. The word about the project has spread, and even resulted in a few local newspaper articles around the country. It seems that his layer is becoming quite popular. John is happy to find out that what he started has now been added to other thematic maps on Knowledge Hub: it is part of the content on points of interest in Cork County, it is part of the EU wide initiative to catalogue lighthouses, and some of the lighthouses are linked in the Ireland Heritage places.
In order to make Knowledge Hub as user friendly and easy to use, we welcome every suggestion, both from Hercules partners and general public. Additional tutorial videos and other material will be also be created and added to the Knowledge Hub based on suggestions and requests Knowledge Hub’s users.