First Step Towards INSPIRE in Pocket

Test the FIRST VERSION OF our new product HS-CAT (click on the logo).

The idea of INSPIRE in pocket was for first time presented during the INSPIRE Conference in Istanbul 2012 as a result of the Habitats project.


Massive mobile technology growth during the last few years has brought GIS technologies into another dimension. Location based services and spatial information came to everyday life. It is a big challenge for standard GIS technologies. New areas of applications are revealed for wide community of users.

The INSPIRE and mobile mapping apps infrastructures differ in many things such as philosophy, application area and technical solution.

INSPIRE is politically driven top down approach. It is important to see how INSPIRE reflects local, regional and national needs. Currently, there is a low awareness on regional level and the benefits for the local level are not clearly defined. During the Joint Research Centre  Cost benefit workshop in 2012 the schema below was presented Bregt (2012). The schema shows the relation between the level of governance and the amount of benefits.

Figure by Bregt (2012)

The INSPIRE in pocket idea is a solution turning the green triangle upside down. It is also vital for the successful implementation of INSPIRE. Currently, there exist two worlds, 1) top down managed world of INSPIRE (GMES, GEOSS and similar initiatives) represented by SDI experts and 2) world of smartphones, tablets, world of ordinary people and also world of thousands micro SMEs developing applications.

There are two important issues. On the one hand, Europe and EU invest hundreds of millions of euros in building the INSPIRE infrastructure. On the other hand, most of European SMEs and citizens use for their applications Google maps. National and regional SDIs offer such information which is not available on Google.

The question is, if we are able to find a bridge between these two worlds? Could ordinary users profit from INSPIRE? Could INSPIRE profit from different voluntary initiatives? Is it possible on the basis of INSPIRE to build successful businesses for hundreds and thousands of European SMEs? Are we able to find WIN – WIN strategy for public sector, private sector and citizens?

The idea of INSPIRE in pocket is to build a bridge between these two worlds. First step was done by implementing the SuperCAT catalogue harvesting metadata all over the world. See

Now we are happy to announce the first real step towards INSPIRE in Pocket HS-CAT.

HS-CAT is application for searching, browsing and displaying metadata records (ISO 19115 / 19119 / 19139).

The main features of HS-CAT are:

  • Based on the Open Geospatial Consortium Catalogue Service for the Web (CSW) 2.0.2, ISO application profile 1.0.
  • Ready to access INSPIRE and other SDI catalogues.
  • Catalogued Web Map Services (WMS) may be displayed in Locus app.
  • Catalogued KML may be displayed in Google Maps.
  • This is a beta version. Any comments and suggestions for improving the app are welcome.

App Screenshots

Further development

Our next goals are:

  • to support multilingual search using machine (automated) translation;
  • to integrate the principles of Open Linked data;
  • to find new forms of data publication using technological standards and media approaches.


Bregt, A., 2012. Cost-Benefit Analysis in Perspective.