Book Image

Mapbox Cookbook

By : Bill Kastanakis, Vasileios Kastanakis
Book Image

Mapbox Cookbook

By: Bill Kastanakis, Vasileios Kastanakis

Overview of this book

Maps are an essential element in today’s location aware applications. Right from displaying earth surface information to creating thematic maps displaying plethora of information, most of the developers lack the necessary knowledge to create customizable maps with combination of various tools and libraries. The MapBox platform is one such platform which offers all the tools and API required to create and publish a totally customizable map. Starting with building your first map with the online MapBox Editor, we will take you all the way to building advanced web and mobile applications with totally customizable map styles. Through the course of chapters we’ll learn CartoCSS styling language and understand the various components of MapBox platform and their corresponding JavaScript API. In the initial few chapters we will dive deeper into the TileMill and MapBox Studio components of MapBox and use them to generate custom styled map tiles and vector maps. Furthermore, we will publish these custom maps using PHP, node.js and third party tools like Geoserver. We’ll also learn to create different visualizations and map styles like a choropleth map, a heat map and add user interactivity using a UFTGrid. Moving on, we dive into advanced concepts and focus on integration with third party services like Foursquare, Google FusionTables, CartoDB, and Torque to help you populate and even animate your maps. In the final chapter we’ll learn to use the Mapbox SDK to create and publish interactive maps for the iOS platform. By the end of this book, you will learn about MapBox GL and how to create a fully functional, location-aware mobile app, using the maps styles created in the recipes.
Table of Contents (13 chapters)
Mapbox Cookbook
About the Author
About the Reviewer


Mapbox web services are the lowest-level API available on the platform. Every other API and functionality provided by Mapbox, such as the JavaScript API or Mapbox.js, is based on services. It uses GET REST calls to fetch the data you require from Mapbox servers.

REST services are based on HTTP verbs to perform certain actions, such as reading, creating, updating, and deleting records. GET requests are used to read data from the server; PUT requests are used usually to update data; POST requests are used to create a new record; and DELETE requests are used to delete a record. The Mapbox API is a read-only one, so we only have access to GET requests to read data.

Mapbox supports both HTTP and HTTPS secure connections. When the REST call is invalid, the server responds with the relative HTTP error code and a message in plain text, not a JSON object as usual.

Access tokens

To get access to the services, we will need an access token. We discussed access tokens in Chapter 1, Introduction...