Fetching service points with an embedded map from Suomi.fi -maps

Service points from The Social Insurance Institution of Finland (Kela) can now be observed with a new web map service. It is provided by an Oskari based service called Suomi.fi - maps (the Suomi.fi Service is being developed by the Population Register Centre of Finland). The possibility to publish embedded maps from Oskari based services enables also the creation of own tailored light weight web maps using Oskari API. The embedded map can be used to retrieve information from your website or own databases. In this case Kela created search forms to fetch data from their service points around Finland. We asked them a little bit how the service creation went and what challenges they had.

Use what is already there

– The search application used Suomi.fi -maps and other open source components. We want to build our applications on top of already existing and available public sector services so that we do not have to create everything from scratch, describes Kela's web marketing expert Samuli Vuorinen.

- The search service uses the national Service database created also in the Suomi.fi Services. The querying of the data was quite simple. However the database does not suit to all our needs, but in this case it functions well. The organisations in Finland still have some learning to do - how they are delivering their service point information as fast as possible to the national database, continues Vuorinen.

Documentation need improvment

Vuorinen is relatively pleased with Suomi.fi -maps service. Compared to their last service, the current one is considerably more modern and responsive and thus reachable with mobile use also. Mikko Karvonen, a software developer in Kela, describes that Oskari provides convenient and handy functionalities for handling web maps, but there is still need for improving the documentation.

Luckily the documentation improvement for Oskari is on its way and it will be tested also by the students in Turku University of Applied Sciences later this year. Connect to verkkopalvelut[at]maanmittauslaitos.fi for support and questions about Suomi.fi -maps.

Oskari API and your own datasets

Kela service search utilizes the Oskari RPC technology a.c.a. Oskari API. In this case the API is used to fetch data from Kela's json interface. They download information from the national Service database to Kela's own databases couple times a day to ensure the delivery through the application as fast as possible.

The development work is ongoing. For example there is a slight bug how the pop-up info is shown from the symbols (check the GIF above). In order to fix this, follow the discussion in the  Oskari mailing list.

Read more in Finnish: Kelan ajankohtaisista.

More information about how to get Suomi.fi Maps in use (in Finnish) and Suomi.fi Services.