OpenGeo Suite 3.0: investing in open source
Last week we announced the release of OpenGeo Suite 3.0. The release notes cover the nuts and bolts, the components updated, and more. This week we want to explain why we’re excited about 3.0 and why you should be too.
This release is both a culmination of many efforts and a launching pad for things to come. OpenGeo Suite 3.0 brings together significant technical advances in the open source components, including GeoServer 2.2, PostGIS 2.0, and GeoWebCache 1.3. From the beginning, each of these tools was built for the web, resulting in a product that is scalable at a fraction of the cost of the alternatives. While spatial data may present some unique challenges, OpenGeo has the experts to ensure it need not be more complicated than other forms of specialized data.
While it’s well established that open source offers superior scalability and reliability, it may occasionally lack certain specialized features or functionality. Yet this story is changing as open source projects increasingly outpace their proprietary competition—largely thanks to adoption and investment by enterprises and government agencies both large and small. Many of the improvements leading to WPS support and server-side scripting result from a prototype built for the USGS National Hydrography, Dataset, which turns a six-hour workflow into an operation that takes a matter of minutes. Similarly, rendering transformations were developed in part for NASA’s GLOBE program for the dynamic presentation of interpolated surfaces derived from environmental measurements collected at schools around the world. Running the Suite in production has been made easier thanks to our clients at NOAA, who funded improvements to GeoServer’s security subsystem as well as multi-tenancy improvements enabling a single GeoServer instance to publish multiple service endpoints using virtual services. And thanks to support from IGN France and Géoportail, the addition of OGC Web Feature Service 2.0 (WFS) brings the Suite closer to INSPIRE compliance.
These clients have learned that, with commercial open source, their investment isn’t squandered on license fees but instead returns responsive support and improved functionality. OpenGeo sees itself as a beekeeper in Pentaho’s beekeeper model: although honey is mostly free for the taking, consumers are generally willing to pay a beekeeper to cultivate, package, and distribute honey rather than dealing directly with bees themselves. The OpenGeo Suite makes it easier for those enterprises that lack the internal resources to support or develop open source software on their own to procure our support and expertise.
Download OpenGeo Suite 3.0 to see all of this for yourself. We’re is interested in what you have to say, and learning more about how you’re using open source geospatial software; any feedback you provide will help us continue to make and support great software. Contact us to let us know what you think, or to find out how OpenGeo can help you achieve your goals.