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A spatial data server is middleware that provides integrated geospatial database access for various GIS applications, including desktop GIS, Web mapping services, and mobile GIS clients. Different from Web mapping services and GIS analysis services, the goal of spatial data servers is to bridge the gap between heterogeneous geospatial data sets and different GIS applications and programs. Multiple GIS programs and users can request shared geospatial data sets via a single spatial data server. The functions provided by spatial data servers are essential to the establishment of comprehensive spatial data infrastructures.

The functions of spatial data servers are different from geospatial data warehouses, which are also important components in spatial data infrastructures. Most data warehouses can provide only data download functions rather than direct database ...

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