The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) has published a draft GeoPackage specification for comment. The GeoPackage specification attempts to create a non-proprietary means for packaging and exchanging all geospatial data in all its forms (vector, raster, and tiles). A couple of things that jump out at me:
- It calls out SQLite as the reference implementation of a GeoPackage container
- It calls out SpatiaLite 4 as the reference implementation of a vector feature store
- It does not call out a reference implementation for rasters or tiles
- It does not mention exchange of cartography.
Although the draft references the MBTiles specification and uses it as an example of a pure SQL method of storing tiles, it does not call out MBTiles as the chosen storage approach nor does it mention MBTiles as a reference implementation. The draft should not be read as “SpatiaLite + MBTiles.”
I think, in 2013, anything that attempts to do what GeoPackage sets out to do should have some provision for cartography. I would prefer CSS-like approach (such as CartoCSS) and will say so when I submit comments but I would suspect that future discussion of cartography, if any, will probably start with SLD. For now, tiles can fill the gap.
So comments are open, give it a look and tell OGC what you think.