By using web services, New Hanover County is able to provide the people outside of our organization with direct, and flexible, access to our collection of GIS information. Published as web services, our GIS data is freely available to any device that can connect to the Internet. Through a variety of apps, people can access our web services using desktop PC’s, mobile tablets, or mobile smartphones.
We publish web services for specific mapping needs, but we also publish individual GIS layers as services. This creates the opportunity for people to combine different layers, blend different services, and create their own custom web maps to meet their specific needs.
To learn about the different ways you can take advantage of our GIS web services, please explore the information below.
New Hanover County openly shares our GIS data as REST services, because REST provides open interchange of information between a wide range of authoring tools and end-user applications. This allows us to deliver our GIS data to web browsers, phones, tablets, desktops, and wide range of other software applications, allowing developers and application builders to combine and mash up ArcGIS services and web information from many different sources.
A map service is a protocol for serving data from GIS databases and other sources to mobile and web clients. A map service is more than just a geographic dataset—it’s a combination of data and parameters for defining and delivering a dynamic, interactive, intelligent map.
The GeoServices REST Specification provides an open way for web clients to communicate with GIS servers. Clients issue requests to the server through structured URLs. The server responds with map images, text-based geographic information, or other resources that satisfy the request.
REST stands for Representational State Transfer. It’s an architecture designed for sharing information through the use of simple HTTP protocols. Applications compatible with REST are often referred to as RESTful. Most new APIs follow some form of RESTful design pattern to maximize adoption and ease of use.
When New Hanover County creates maps and other geographic content, the information can be published for use in wide range of other software applications. Publishing map services using REST ensures the widest possible distribution of work. Developers of applications can engineer those applications to consume open map services, giving end users access to use and mash up collections of map services unmatched in both quantity and richness.
New Hanover County has published a services directory that allows users to browse our published REST services and functions. The community can also access our services directory in a web browser using this link, http://geo.nhcgov.com/gis/rest/services/
Use our data and services to create your own mapping application.