MapBox Wins $575,000 Grant Funding For OpenStreetMap

MapBox, builder of open source tools for map creation, has just won more than half a million dollars to focus it's development efforts on the OpenStreetMap project.  This is a big win for the mapping community because this grant will further the development of the community at OpenStreetMap as well as strengthen the open source toolset that the MapBox team has been creating.  This funding might also serve as a confidence boost for MapBox API consumers.  I should note that a quick google-check shows that tenured mapping players such as ESRI are also participating in the development of open source mapping tools.

One great feature that the MapBox JavaScript API offers is Integration with OpenGIS Web Map Services (WMS) interface.  In my recent & short foray into the world of mapping for the Kontagent Big Data Challenge, I found that some of the most interesting data was stored in either ESRI shapefiles or provided via WMS.  I had decided to investigate using MapBox's TileMill desktop application (which is also an open source project) to build my data mashup.  In my investigation I was able to find out how to  add shapefiles as a map layer, but I stumbled at the point of adding WMS data.  Now I see the javascript API examples gallery shows just how to add WMS data and its not too hard!

If this gets you in the mood for mapping mashups, check out the 270+ APIs in the mapping category.  Sort them by mashup popularity and you'll notice some strong preferences in the developer community.

Be sure to read the next Mapping article: A Look at the Web's Most Popular API -Google Maps API