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SQL Spatial Draw Tools


SQL Server 2008 Spatial Drawing Tools
We’re all eagerly awaiting SQL Server 2008‘s spatial capabilities.  It is going to rock.  I have been looking around for tools to draw geographic content for SQL 08, but most of them were 3rd party conversion utilities that required database folks to, first, have  some just-right spatial file, download a utility, and then convert it.  What about the ability to just draw your own geographic shapes quickly and easily online, and stuff them right into SQL 08?


We’ve released an update to our Silverlight Virtual Earth map to include a SQL Server 2008 script as an export option.  Now you can draw any number of map shapes and push them to SQL 08 where you can do goodness knows what.


As before, draw to your heart’s content in the Silverlight/Virtual Earth map, then in the Export Drawing options, choose "SQL Server 2008 Script."  You can grab the KML version of your drawing too, if you want to get a preview of it in maps.live or some other KML viewer.  Incidentally, SQL Server 2008 will soon have the ability to preview this geographic content right in the client.

Here it is in SQL Server 2008.  The geographic shapes of Michigan, Indiana, and Ohio have been converted to a WKT string of geographic coordinates.  Also, the name and description fields are pulled in as well.
Note:  The coordinates that are generated are in X-Y (Longitude, Latitude) ordering, not Y-X.  See Isaac Kunen’s blog for more details on SQL Server 2008 coordinate ordering:


Navigation Update
Justin has also added the ability to lasso zoom; a feature of our product that we could no longer do without in this demo.  CTRL-Click and drag a new extent to rocket to that area.

Lasso zooming.  I am about to launch myself to the island of Sicily.


What’s Next?
This map viewer/map drawer tool will soon be wiki-ified.  No more session-based drawing that dies when you close the browser.  Drawings will be save-able and open-able for editing again and again by you or some stranger.

What’s Already There?
A little primer on how to draw: http://idvux.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!2EB6AAF6C3AC1EBE!877.entry
…and a video: http://idvux.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!2EB6AAF6C3AC1EBE!989.entry
Some background on the practical design: http://idvux.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!2EB6AAF6C3AC1EBE!795.entry
How Silverlight is going: http://idvux.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!2EB6AAF6C3AC1EBE!926.entry

John Nelson / IDV Solutions / john.nelson@idvsolutions.com


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