What is now a very successful and specialist British GIS software company was originally founded to develop a CAD product - a Microsoft Windows-based application, wincadTM. Cadcorp sold the product outright in 1994, but continued to trade, albeit with a new mission - to develop a family of GIS products. That family came to be known as the âCadcorp SIS - Spatial Information Systemâ
The Institute of Directors, London, was the prestigious venue for Cadcorpâs 20th anniversary celebrationLast month Computer Aided Development Corporation Ltd. celebrated its 20 years of success by inviting all staff to an anniversary lunch at the Institute of Directors, London.The first sales of Cadcorp SIS were made in 1995, and the first sale to Japan followed one year later. By 1998, Cadcorp was celebrating its first corporate sale in UK local government. From its headquarters in Stevenage, Herts., Cadcorp now operates a worldwide partner network. In the UK, over 120 local authorities, 37 fire brigades, 6 police services and many commercial organisations, use Cadcorp software every day. In the Netherlands, over 180 municipalities rely on Cadcorp software for property registration. Through its Tokyo based partner Informatix Inc., Cadcorp is a now major player in the Japanese market.Mike OâNeil, CEO and founder of Cadcorp, accounted for the success of the company. âMany people questioned our sanity; first when we chose Microsoft Windows, and second when we decided to build a family of GIS software from scratch. In fact it was to our advantage that we could build product from the ground up. We had no legacy baggage to carry over. In addition, we were also able to take our expertise in building CAD products and apply this to GIS. The underlying technologies are undoubtedly different, but we were able to transfer the attention to detail and the powerful geometric functionality that is mandatory for a CAD product into a family of GIS products. The fact that all our GIS software derives from the same code has proved to be very valuable for our developers, partners and customers alike.âCadcorp has a very public track record of promoting open standards in the GIS industry. The company joined the Technical Committee of the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) in 1997. Two years later, Cadcorp was the first organisation to pass conformance testing for OpenGIS Simple Features. In 2002, Cadcorpâs Technical Director, Martin Daly, was formally recognised by the Board of OGC. He became the first European to be awarded the prestigious Kenneth D. Gardels medal for his âmany contributions to the development of OpenGIS Specifications and to the advancement of the Consortiumâs vision of interoperable geoprocessingâ.Mike OâNeil had the following to say about Cadcorpâs attachment to standards throughout its 20 year history. âSome people mistakenly view IT standards as being about imposing restrictions. The reality is quite the reverse. Itâs only by following an approach based on standards and open technologies that we can break down the barriers to GIS being able to interoperate with other GIS and - more importantly â other non-GIS systems. I believed passionately 20 years ago that Cadcorp products should not lock users into proprietary solutions and technologies. I still hold that belief.â
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