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Mobile GIS is the integration of geographic information system (GIS) software, global positioning system (GPS) technology, and

rugged handheld computers. A mobile GIS enables field-based personnel to capture, store, update, manipulate, analyze, and display geographic information. Mobile GIS integrates one or more of the following technologies: Mobile devices Global positioning system (GPS) Wireless communications for Internet GIS access

MapAsia 2003

13-15 Oct. 2003

The Architecture of Mobile GIS Mobile GIS can be taken as a sub research area in Web GIS. The distributed computing of Mobile GIS, include the Server and the moving Client side by the wireless internet. And the architecture of distributed computer is the most import facts in Mobile GIS.


Introduction Overview of MacauMap Technical challenges Conclusions Future Work

1961: Macau government declared Macau a City of Tourism 2000: Tourism is leading economic sector

Over 10 million visitors per year

Importance of continuous development of


Maps: indispensable tools for tourists

Macau Government Tourist Office distributes

free paper tourist maps

Paper maps:
Limited to certain amount of detail Difficult to find a location in the map Difficult to find ones own location

Digital maps:
Can show arbitrary amount of detail, using

zooming & filtering Easy to implement searching for any location Can show ones own location (using GPS)

Motivation for development of mobile digital map


3 parts: Macau peninsula, Taipa & Coloane islands Total land area: ~ 25 km2 Population: ~ 450,000 (18,000 / km2) 1188 streets (48 / km2) Densely populated & built up Two official languages: Chinese, Portuguese Great amount of detail for map drawing


MacauMap: PDA-based mobile GIS application

Main functions:
Runs on PalmOS, Pocket PC

Map display (streets, coastal outlines, green

areas, lakes) Map navigation Bilingual information (Chinese, English) Bus routing Sightseeing guide Hotel & restaurant guide GPS support


PalmOS version

Pocket PC version

Drawing a rectangle to zoom in on an area:


Finding a park on Taipa island


Displaying more information about the park


Looking up restaurants by: (1) style, (2) class, (3) location


Selecting a start point

Selecting an end point


Setting search options

Display of the shortest route


English labels

Chinese labels


Oct 2001 May 2003: development May 2003: first public release through Macau Government Tourist Office website (, for free download Jul/Sep 2003: Version 2, PalmOS/Pocket PC Over 20,000 downloads in first 4 months

~ 2/3 for PalmOS ~ 1/3 for Pocket PC


Limitations of PDAs:
Small memory (min. 2MB) Slow processor speed (min. 16MHz)

Small screen (< 3", min. 160x160 pixels)

Demands of map drawing:

Large data sets

Many calculations
Large number of map objects

Requires careful application design


Large size of map datasets: 30MB AutoCAD bus route data 1.5MB basic map data (streets, coastal outlines, etc.) additional tourist guide & photo databases) Small PDA memory (min. 2MB) For storage & working memory For OS & all applications Memory usage target: 500KB (for MacauMap data & application)

ESRI Shapefile Source Data

MacauMap Data


Converting AutoCAD bus route data to ESRI shapefile (from 30MB to 175KB) Map data generalization (from 1.6MB to 1.4MB) Converting from ESRI Shapefiles to an efficient MacauMap data format (final size: 250KB)


Large number of map objects (1188 streets, plus

many other objects) Time-consuming calculation of screen coordinates Time-consuming drawing of map objects Slow processor speed (min. 16MHz)

Solution approach:
Reduce number of objects Increase speed of calculation & drawing Performance target: 1-2 sec.

Map data generalization

Reduces number of line segments

Converting map data to large integers

Avoids expensive floating point calculations

Map data filtering

Leveling of streets by width Filtering out some streets dependent on zoom

level & street width level

Different map display modes

Allow user to choose less detailed map display

Center line format


Background colour format


Background colour format with street borders


Map display mode may be reduced to lower level of detail based on:
Zoom level

(at 1x-7x zoom level: use centreline format only) Street width (at 8x-31x zoom level: draw borders for wide streets only)

Streets drawn as centrelines


Wide streets drawn with borders

All streets drawn with borders


Successful in achieving satisfactory performance of MacauMap even on slow PDAs MacauMap proving popular: over 150 downloads a day Positive comments from MacauMap users:

Increased inclination to visiting Macau

Satisfied with MacauMap after visiting Macau

Also popular with local Macau residents


MacauMap mobile phone version (J2ME & Symbian) MacauMap web-based version Other language versions (e.g. Japanese, simplified Chinese) More tourist information Inclusion of buildings Street lamp locating