Leaflet - a new open source JavaScript library for maps by CloudMade

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Leaflet - a new open source JavaScript library for maps by CloudMade

Vladimir Agafonkin
Hi,

Today CloudMade announced the first public release of Leaflet, its new open source JavaScript library for interactive maps on both desktop and mobile browsers (currently in beta). See the announcement here: http://blog.cloudmade.com/2011/05/13/announcing-leaflet-a-modern-open-source-javascript-library-for-interactive-maps/

I'm Leaflet lead developer at CloudMade and I'll be happy to hear what you think and answer any questions about the library here. :)

The official website: http://leaflet.cloudmade.com/

Thanks!

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Vladimir Agafonkin
Front-End Architect, CloudMade
+380 93 745 44 61

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Re: Leaflet - a new open source JavaScript library for maps by CloudMade

Frederik Ramm
Hi Vladimir,

> I'm Leaflet lead developer at CloudMade and I'll be happy to hear what
> you think and answer any questions about the library here. :)

It would be great to have a yardstick from you comparing Leaflet to
OpenLayers in an "if you want ... you'll probably be better off with
Leaflet but if you want ... you'll be probably bet better of with
OpenLayers" way.

Bye
Frederik

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Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail [hidden email]  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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Re: Leaflet - a new open source JavaScript library for maps by CloudMade

Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason
In reply to this post by Vladimir Agafonkin
On Fri, May 13, 2011 at 14:34, Vladimir Agafonkin
<[hidden email]> wrote:

> I'm Leaflet lead developer at CloudMade and I'll be happy to hear what you
> think and answer any questions about the library here. :)

This library is very heavy on the GPU (as opposed to google maps),
which makes it really slow in e.g. vmware without GPU acceleration,
and presumably on platforms that don't have a GPU.

I've seen this before e.g. with some jQuery animations, which are
really slow without a GPU.

OpenLayers and Google Maps don't suffer from the same problem.

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Re: Leaflet - a new open source JavaScript library for maps by CloudMade

Paul Hartmann
Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason wrote:

> On Fri, May 13, 2011 at 14:34, Vladimir Agafonkin
> <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> I'm Leaflet lead developer at CloudMade and I'll be happy to hear what you
>> think and answer any questions about the library here. :)
>
> This library is very heavy on the GPU (as opposed to google maps),
> which makes it really slow in e.g. vmware without GPU acceleration,
> and presumably on platforms that don't have a GPU.
>
> I've seen this before e.g. with some jQuery animations, which are
> really slow without a GPU.
>
> OpenLayers and Google Maps don't suffer from the same problem.

The animations are awesome though. On my system, they work in Chrome, but not in Firefox 3.6 or Opera 11.01 browser.

Normally I'd say it is good to have a little competition, but wouldn't it be so much easier to fork OL and rewrite the parts you don't like? A "friendly fork" could contribute some code upstream occasionally.

Paul

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Re: Leaflet - a new open source JavaScript library for maps by CloudMade

Vladimir Agafonkin
In reply to this post by Frederik Ramm
On Sun, May 15, 2011 at 7:01 PM, Frederik Ramm <[hidden email]> wrote:
It would be great to have a yardstick from you comparing Leaflet to OpenLayers in an "if you want ... you'll probably be better off with Leaflet but if you want ... you'll be probably bet better of with OpenLayers" way.

I'd say that you should use OpenLayers if you want a really mature, massive library with tons of features, supporting myriads of GIS data formats, layers etc., but if you don't need much more than just a map with some tile layers, markers, popups and vectors on it, and want a faster and smaller library that is easier to use and works well under mobile browsers too, try Leaflet.

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Vladimir Agafonkin
Front-End Architect, CloudMade
+380 93 745 44 61

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Re: Leaflet - a new open source JavaScript library for maps by CloudMade

Vladimir Agafonkin
In reply to this post by Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason
On Sun, May 15, 2011 at 8:44 PM, Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason <[hidden email]> wrote:
This library is very heavy on the GPU (as opposed to google maps),
which makes it really slow in e.g. vmware without GPU acceleration,
and presumably on platforms that don't have a GPU.

It works pretty fast on one of my PCs that doesn't have GPU-accelerated browser graphics. The only thing that can possibly appear to be slow on such system is the zoom animation which is easily turned off. By the way, Google Maps v3 takes advantage of the GPU too.

If you experience a noticeable slowdown with Leaflet in comparison to other libraries - please report the details here https://github.com/CloudMade/Leaflet/issues (browser version, platform, what action is slow, etc.), it's not normal and will probably be fixed.

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Vladimir Agafonkin
Front-End Architect, CloudMade
+380 93 745 44 61

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Re: Leaflet - a new open source JavaScript library for maps by CloudMade

Vladimir Agafonkin
In reply to this post by Paul Hartmann
On Sun, May 15, 2011 at 10:27 PM, Paul Hartmann <[hidden email]> wrote:
The animations are awesome though. On my system, they work in Chrome, but not in Firefox 3.6 or Opera 11.01 browser.

The zoom animation works on browsers that support CSS3 Transforms and Transitions (e.g. in Chrome, FF4+, Safari, iOS). It's also coming in IE9 & Opera in future versions.
 
Normally I'd say it is good to have a little competition, but wouldn't it be so much easier to fork OL and rewrite the parts you don't like? A "friendly fork" could contribute some code upstream occasionally.

If I had to rewrite the parts of OL I don't like I would end up rewriting everything (not to mention how enormous it is in terms of amount of code). Not that there's something really bad about it, it's just has a different vision from mine: development approach, design choices, API, set of features, etc. I guess I need to write a big detailed post about reasons that convinced me to write a library from scratch when I could just use OL - but believe me, they were quite significant.

But I'd love to contribute to Polymaps and Modest Maps JS libraries in future - I like them a lot. :)

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Vladimir Agafonkin
Front-End Architect, CloudMade
+380 93 745 44 61

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