Tips on Creating, Publishing, and Updating Map Tiles

Map tiles can be viewed as a map package that contains lots of map images (raster tiles) or vector data (vector tiles). They come with lots of benefits. On one hand, it is a lot easier to share map tiles via the Internet than to share raw map data. On the other hand, surveyors can browse them on their mobile devices and bring them to the fields. This article will introduce how to use Cache Generator (an add-on in SuperGIS Desktop) to create, publish, and update the map tiles.

Create Map Tiles


The Cache Generator allows users to define desired scale schema and layers. We can use spatial filters or masks to generate map tiles in certain areas. Also, the tile formats can be defined as image/png, image/jpg (raster tiles), or text/xml (vector tiles). A key step here is to save a definition file by click Save *.def. The definition file contains all the scale schema, layers used, filters or masks, and tile formats. And it can be used to publish or update the map tile.

Publish Map Tiles


If users want to publish map tiles, they can use SuperGIS Server. When publishing a cache service, users can find a Load from *.def button to allow them easily to import the cache settings of the map tile. This is a new function available in the latest version of SuperGIS Server 3.2. By loading the definition files with this magic button, users can publish their map tiles in no time.

Update Map Tiles


When the map data are updated, the map tiles should be updated as well. To update the map tile, users have to create a new map tile first. The map tile should only contain the parts needed to be updated so that you don’t have to spend lots of time to generate a whole map again. Then use the Merge caches function in this powerful Cache Generator. The idea is to merge the updated parts to the old one. Just assign the scales and layers you want to replace in the scale list and layers, and you are good to go. Please be noted that all the map tiles to be merged should have the same cache settings. Different cache settings mean there could be different scale schemas, numbers of layers, and even different geography extents, and it will not be merged successfully.

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