Case Study: Custom Map versus Map Product Solution

Case Study: Custom Versus Maprosoft Map

Introduction

The City of Sydney has developed a map showing the locations of development applications (DAs). The map can be viewed at the following location:

This paper provides a comparison between the development of a custom solution such as this versus a product based solution that would be achieved using a product such as Maprosoft, producing the following comparable map:

This study is based on the City of Sydney's DA map solution as of June 2013. The solution may subsequently change, however, the theory would be unaffected.

Cost Comparison

Developed Code

The following table provides a summary of estimated costs of the custom development:

Source Type Lines
development.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/DAsOnExhibition/DAExhibitionMAP.asp HTML 11
development.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/DataSource/Includes/GMapUtil.js Javascript 324
development.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/DAsOnExhibition/DAMaps.js Javascript 438
development.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/DAsOnExhibition/DAMap.css CSS 28
Code to generate the custom data feed at development.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/DataSource/DANotifications/DAsOnline.xml. Unknown 250
(guess)
Total 1051

Assumptions

  1. An average development team delivers 12 500 lines of code per year per member (source: Cutter Consortium, www.cutter.com).
  2. An average development team member costs $110 000 per year (source: Greythorn Australian Salary Survey and Market Report, 2012-2013).
  3. The City of Sydney DA map page utilises other Javascript sources, however, these are presumably shared by other pages in their website so they have not been included in the DA page development costs.
  4. Based on the previous two assumptions, one line of code costs $8.80 to develop.

Cost Estimate

Based on the assumptions and amount of custom code developed, the City of Sydney development applications map cost $9,249 to develop.

A Maprosoft enterprise license costs $10,000 (pricing as of June, 2013).

Maintenance

The City of Sydney developed map code is based on version 2 of the Google Maps Javascript API which is deprecated and not supported from November 19, 2013. This means that the City of Sydney will need to invest further development work into their custom map solution in order to upgrade it to use the latest version of the API.

Feature Comparison

The custom development applications map only delivers a single type of map. A solution such as Council Map Server will deliver any number of maps. Further, Maprosoft provides the following extra functionality:

  • Combine the DAs map with other features such as parks, building zones, etc.
  • Directions, street view, virtual tours.
  • Mobile app integration.
  • Map resizing.

Summary

This paper indicates the cost of the development of the City of Sydney’s custom DAs map is comparable to the cost of an enterprise website map management solution - Maprosoft. Further, the City of Sydney’s custom solution is limited in functionality and will require further investment to ensure it functions when Google stops supporting version 2 of their Javascript maps API.