BlueSpray - Help
© SchoonerTurtles, Inc. 2012-2015

Getting Started

About BlueSpray

BlueSpray was created by SchoonerTurtles founder, Dr. Jim Graham. Jim worked over a decade researching image processing techniques and then over a decade developing ground-breaking GIS solutions. He created the first versions of BlueSpray to help him create fast and reliable GIS software. This software was behind many of his innovative GIS web sites. After joining Colorado State University and teaching GIS, Jim saw that most students struggled with the commercial GIS software because is was slower and harder to use than it should be and far more expensive. He then decided users deserved something better and decided to make BlueSpray available for non-profit and educational uses.

Jim wanted BlueSpray to be fast, easy to use, robust, and full-featured. He also needed it to be easy to support because the first versions were created and maintained in his spare time. Since he could not add all the features that BlueSpray would need he instead created a design that was easy to extend. This was so successful that extensions to BlueSpray can be added in a few hours by experienced developers.

The components selected to include in BlueSpray had to be as fast and robust as the rest of the program. A large number of OpenSource components were considered but most were rejected because of these criteria or because they were not well documented or supported. The ones that were rejected often had to be replaced by custom code written by Jim because no viable alternative was available. The ones that were selected include:

  • Shapefile reader from GeoTools
  • Projection library from GeoTools
  • Portions of the EPSG Database
  • Java Topology Suite (JTS) from VividSolutions
  • Apache Creative Commons Compression
  • Hierarchical Data Format (HDF) from NCAR
  • Java NetCDF Library from NCAR
  • GDAL raster file IO library
  • OGR vector file IO library
  • Rhino Javascript interpreter
  • Java OpenGL library

Many of the standard Java libraries had excellent performance and reliability. However, the bulk of the Java Advanced Imaging Engine could not be used because of poor memory management and defects. The following Java libraries were used:

  • Java Virtual Machine
  • Java Image I/O
  • Java 3D

Throughout development SchoonerTurtles has relied heavily on the Internet community for ideas and help in implementing excellent software. A subset of these resources include:

  • Java/Oracle tutorial and reference pages
  • VividSolutions Java Docs
  • GIF Animation code from: .
  • GNU Image Processing Program (GNU)

To all those who write code that is reliable, fast, and well documented - thank you!