MapXtreme allows .NET developers to create custom mapping applications that require both high-quality digital maps, and controls and instructions to manipulate those maps. It enables .NET developers to incorporate and display many types of data onto maps, and to easily add a variety of controls, themes, graphs and other features that enable users to more effectively analyze location-based information. Real estate professionals use it to analyze locations for development; technical support representatives use it to look for root causes of service outage patterns; engineers use it to examine highway patterns for future growth.
MapXtreme v7.0 incorporates an array of new features over v6.0, such as grid analysis, linear referencing and dynamic segmentation, improved performance of shapefiles, and an extensible workspace manager for application development. It supports both SQL Server 2008 Spatial and Oracle 11G, as well as SpatialWare for Microsoft SQL Server and IBM Informix. The data provider model makes it possible to take data from a wide variety of data sources, integrate them into a single table, and use this table as a single data source for a .NET Framework application.
MapXtreme v7.0 requires either Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 or Microsoft 2008, along with the .NET Framework 2.0. If you’re using Microsoft Visual Studio 2008, it will offer to begin or upgrade your project to the latest installed .NET Framework, which you may want to do, depending on your company standard. As long as you’re using at least 2.0, the .NET Framework version has no discernible effect on performance.
The product installs on Microsoft Visual Studio, providing the .NET developer with its features from within the development environment. Launching Microsoft Visual Studio, the .NET developer can choose between a rich client or Web (ASP.NET) project. MapXtreme v7.0 provides templates for either type of project. Selecting File -> Project -> New lets the developer choose a MapXtreme project for a WinForms, or rich client, application. Selecting File -> Website -> New provides a template for a MapXtreme ASP.NET application. The documentation notes that applications developed for the desktop can be moved to the Web and vice versa with minimal effort.
.NET Developers can use MapXtreme .NET classes to incorporate themes into mapping applications, enabling users to visualize data in ways that make sense for their needs.
MapXtreme provides three Web controls – MapControl, LayerControl and LegendControl— and a number of map tools. The Web controls show content, such as a map, a list of maps and label layers and their properties or a legend. The tools interact with the MapControl to change the view of the map or to select specific features on the map.
The .NET architecture used by a MapXtreme Web application is the Model-View-Controller (MVC) design pattern, in which the application logic represents the Model, the Web page with displays and controls represents the View, and the MapXtreme Server that responds to requests for information represents the Controller.