Gramps is not a web browser …. yes?

I am currently working at integrating the GeoView Serge contributed inside of GRAMPS. GeoView is a way of displaying your genealogy information on a map. This has been tried before in GRAMPS with MapView, which never got past some initial coding efforts (before me time with GRAMPS, I don’t really know what the issues where). MapView shows already however that the GRAMPS developers are very aware that geographical information can help a researcher in his analysis.

So, in the beginning of 2008, Serge contributed GeoView, a way of showing Google Maps inside of GRAMPS, driven from data in your family tree. Serge went a long way in improving his code. He added OpenStreetMap due to concern of the core GRAMPS contributers, got consent of the BSD style library driving the map abstraction layer, … . So, some weeks ago I decided to jump in and get this code into GRAMPS as experimental code. If people like it, and want it, this can be shipped as an addition to version 3.0.1, if not, well, I’m sure I’ll have fun trying this. I worked on PlaceUtils, the Place Completion tool and an export to KML to see data in Google Earth, so I guess I’m a bit interested in seeing this effort succeed.

The first thing I did was add Serge’s code to subversion, it works after all, even if some polish and care is needed. Now I’m in the process of reorganizing this code and make sure it is easy to maintain. The code was one large class, so some refractoring is in order. The first thing I did was abstract away the difference between the two backends, WebKit or Mozilla. Perhaps a window developer can now jump in and add explorer 😉 ?

Next, I decided to split off all the code that drives the webpage display into it’s own class, HtmlView. Like that, GeoView can inherit from HtmlView, and bother only about creating the javascript needed to drive

Gramps website inside of GRAMPS

Gramps website inside of GRAMPS

the map display. I committed HtmlView today, a picture says more than 1000 words 🙂

HtmlView is meant as a base class for GeoView, not for a real view, but this is fun nevertheless. You can type a web address at the top, and GRAMPS dutifully will display it. The bugs of the renderer you get for free (see the image in the top left missing). I don’t plan to add anything fancy to HtmlView, if somebody is interested in adding backward, forward, … then be my guess. I’ll now change GeoView to inherit from this class.

Quick info on how you can try this out yourself:

  • get the latest SVN version and make it
  • edit your ~/.gramps/keys.ini file: Look up your data-views key, and add HtmlView. For me this means I now have:


  • Make sure you have one of the backends. I have gtkmozembed installed, Serge Webkit. Webkit does currently not work in Ubuntu Hardy, you are warned.
  • restart Gramps and try it out.

It would be interesting if somebody on windows can find out if he can make this work on that platform.

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