There are two major organizations, namely the Open GIS Consortium, Inc. (OGC) and the Technical Committee tasked by the International Standards Organization (ISO/TC211), that set industry standards for distributed GIServices. The main goals of OGC are the full integration of geospatial data and geoprocessing resources into mainstream computing, and the widespread use of interoperable geoprocessing software and geodata products throughout the information infrastructure (OGC, 1998). ISO/TC211 emphasizes a service-oriented view of geoprocessing technology and a balanced concern for information, application, and systems (Kuhn, 1997). The chapter will introduce the two organizations and their Internet GIS and Distributed GIServices standards. Metadata standards will also be discussed.

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Chapter 6 Standards for Distributed GIServices

6.1 The OpenGIS Specification
      6.1.1 The OpenGIS Abstract Specification

      6.1.2 Open GIS Implementation Specifications

      6.1.3 The OpenGIS Standard in Practice
6.2 The ISO/TC 211 and its ISO Standards
      6.2.1 The ISO 19101 -- Reference Model
      6.2.2 The ISO Geospatial Data Model
      6.2.3 The ISO Standard in Practice
6.3 Comparison between OGC and ISO/TC 211
6.4 The Development of Geospatial Metadata Standards
      6.4.1 Introduction to Geospatial Metadata and the FGDC Metadata Standards
      6.4.2 The ISO Standard for GIS Metadata
      6.4.3 An Object-Oriented Metadata Framework
6.5 Discussion


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  • The Open GIS Consortium Implementation Specification (
    Following the links offered in this website, you can explore the detailed specifications. The contents of the OpenGIS Specification (both the abstract and implementation specifications) are based on three conceptual models, the Open Geodata Model (OGM), OpenGIS Services and Information Communities Model. Implementation Specifications are created by GIS software vendors, based on specific Distributed Computing Platforms (DCP) or languages such as XML. Two important Implementation Specifications are the OpenGIS Web Map Server (WMS) Interfaces Implementation Specification and the OpenGIS Geography Markup Language (GML) Implementation Specification.

  • ISO/TC 211 (
    ISO Standards proposes a standard framework for the description and management of geographic information and geographic information services. The ISO Geographic Information Standards was known as the ISO 15046 Standards. The core concept of ISO Geographic Information Standards is ISO 19101 Reference Model, which has four conceptual components: Conceptual Modelling, the Domain Reference Model, the Architectural Reference Model, and Profiles. ISO/TC 211 did not specify the actual implementation specifications for different platforms and the private software vendors. Instead, ISO/TC 211 defines a high-level data model for the public sector, such as governments, federal agencies, and professional organizations.
    (from Internet GIS)

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