[OGC Press Release] OGC Standards Enable Armchair Captains to Track Rolex Fastnet Races

OGC Press Release announce at opengeospatial.org
Fri Aug 12 11:06:50 EST 2005

For information about this announcement, contact:

Sam Bacharach
Executive Director, Outreach and Community Adoption
Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc
tel: +1-703-352-3938
sbacharach at opengeospatial.org


Wayland, Mass, August 12, 2005 - There's a bit of invisible magic
enabling the mapping website that shows the current positions of the
sailing vessels in this year's Rolex Fastnet race from the Isle of
Wight to Plymouth. Visitors to http://www.netandsea.com/fastnetrace/
see colorful maps from Netency with regularly updated data on 10 of
the 250 yachts. But what pulls all the data together underneath?
Elegant open geospatial standards.

Netency has covered a series of races on its website since January of
this year. The Rolex Fasnet Race is the fifth. How does the company
"custom build" a website for each race? It takes advantage of Open
Geospatial Consortium, Inc. (OGC) standards that make calling one map
as easy as calling another, no matter what software in the background.

Netency can call different background maps for different races from
different servers across the world. The real time data on boat
locations and winds are automatically overlain to create the real time
maps. "OGC specifications were really an important part of the
architecture from its conception, in particular the OGC Web Map
Service (WMS). The standard provides such flexibility to the website
architecture. We can change the rendering of map by just referencing
another WMS server!" noted Didier Caillon, the technical lead at

The race runs biennially and is considered one of the world's classic
ocean races covering 608 miles including tricky tidal currents and
changeable weather conditions. The race is organized by the Royal
Ocean Racing Club, with the Royal Yacht Squadron and the Royal Western
Yacht Club, Plymouth. It began on Sunday August 7 and wrapped up on
August 10th. Sailing schools, corporate institutions, family owned and
crewed cruiser-racers, dedicated amateurs, club sailors along with the
hardened champions from all over the world.

The OGC is an international industry consortium of more than 270
companies, government agencies and universities participating in a
consensus process to develop publicly available interface
specifications. OpenGIS(R) Specifications support interoperable
solutions that "geo-enable" the Web, wireless and location-based
services, and mainstream IT. The specifications empower technology
developers to make complex spatial information and services accessible
and useful with all kinds of applications. Visit the OGC website at

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