To help organisations of all sizes better manage their spatial data, Boundless is releasing Versio, a distributed version control system that streamlines the creation, maintenance, and distribution of spatial data.
“Every organization, from small workgroups to major enterprises or government agencies, is challenged by managing spatial data,” said Joshua Campbell, vice president of product management at Boundless. “Spatial data is dynamic, requiring careful management of updates and quality control. The current tools for managing spatial data are lacking, resulting in either file management nightmares with multiple copies and filenames of data, or costly and complex centralised databases.”
Versio solves these data management problems by using distributed versioning to provide a method of collaboration and data storage. With Versio, data owners and GIS analysts determine specifically who they collaborate with, creating private data repositories and inviting others to join, or sharing a data repository for ‘the crowd’ to update. It supports multiple editing workflows, both online and offline, including traditional desktop GIS, web, mobile, or custom applications built on the Versio API.
Boundless has previously used the distributed versioning concept with GeoGig, an open source tool that draws inspiration from Git but adapts its core concepts specifically for spatial data. Rather than requiring a central database, each individual’s working copy of the spatial data is a complete repository. By building Versio on GeoGig, the entire lineage of a dataset can be tracked and visualised through time, file sizes are minimised as you don’t have to store redundant data, and it is possible to easily roll back to a previous version or maintain different branches of a dataset.
Versio is now available in private beta with select customers and community members. It is expected to be more widely available in early 2015. Those interested in participating in the private beta trial should request an invitation at http://vers.io/request-invite.