Before creating our FarmKeeper (www.farmkeeper.com) farm management application, we evaluated a number of different GIS toolkits. The TatukGIS DK-VCL appealed to us because of its flexibility, execution speed and royalty-free distribution. The ability to compile the GIS technology directly into the application was also appealing, for ease of deployment.
Although the TatukGIS DK has integrated editing facilities, we chose to implement our own very simple editor interface. Our goal was to make the creation of a farm map as simple as possible for our users - for example, we felt that each fence should be drawn only once, and our application should be responsible for detecting when fences meet and determining what area they encompass. (Other farm mapping products force each fence to be drawn twice, as part of two different polygons to define the two different paddocks on either side of the fence).
We developed custom algorithms to handle such complex situations as fences inside fences, breaking and rejoining fences, and moving fences once drawn. Although the algorithms are complex, they allow the program to appear incredibly simple to the user - they simply have to draw fences on the screen, and the areas inside the fences are recognised automatically.
The flexibility of the TatukGIS DK allowed us to implement this editing interface while still utilising the power and speed of the DK's display engine. We also created our own SQL database storage layer to support our unique editing interface, and had no problems integrating this custom storage with the main DK engine.
We received outstanding support from the TatukGIS team throughout our development process. The support staff was always accurate, informative, approachable and honest, and emails were answered promptly and accurately.
FarmKeeper Pty Ltd
Hawthorn East, Victoria, Australia
(Related Item: 2004 News)