The following list describes common words used with the Azure Maps services.
Aerial imagery: See Satellite imagery.
Ambiguous: A state of uncertainty in data classification that exists when an object may appropriately be assigned two or more values for a given attribute. For example, when geocoding "CA", two ambiguous results are returned: "Canada" and "California". "CA" is a country/region and a state code, for "Canada" and "California", respectively.
Annotation: Text or graphics displayed on the map to provide information to the user. Annotation may identify or describe a specific map entity, provide general information about an area on the map, or supply information about the map itself.
API key: See Shared key authentication.
Asynchronous request: An HTTP request that opens a connection and makes a request to the server that returns an identifier for the asynchronous request, then closes the connection. The server continues to process the request and the user can check the status using the identifier. When the request is finished processing, the user can then download the response. This type of request is used for long running processes.
Microsoft Entra ID: Microsoft Entra ID is Microsoft's cloud-based identity and access management service. Azure Maps Microsoft Entra integration is currently available in preview for all Azure Maps APIs. Microsoft Entra ID supports Azure role-based access control (Azure RBAC) to allow fine-grained access to Azure Maps resources. To learn more about Azure Maps Microsoft Entra integration, see Azure Maps and Microsoft Entra ID and Manage authentication in Azure Maps.
Azure Maps key: See Shared key authentication.
Boundary: A line or polygon separating adjacent political entities, such as countries/regions, districts, and properties. A boundary is a line that may or may not follow physical features, such as rivers, mountains, or walls.
Bounds: See Bounding box.
Cadastre: A record of registered land and properties. See also Parcel.
Camera: In the context of an interactive map control, a camera defines the maps field of view. The viewport of the camera is determined based on several map parameters: center, zoom level, pitch, bearing.
Choropleth map: A thematic map in which areas are shaded in proportion to a measurement of a statistical variable. This statistical variable is displayed on the map. For example, coloring the boundary of each US state based on its relative population to all other states.
Concave hull: A shape that represents a possible concave geometry that encloses all shapes in the specified data set. The generated shape is similar to wrapping the data with plastic wrap and then heating it, thus causing large spans between points to cave in towards other data points.
Consumption model: Information that defines the rate at which a vehicle consumes fuel or electricity. Also see the consumption model documentation.
Control: A self-contained or reusable component consisting of a graphical user interface that defines a set of behaviors for the interface. For example, a map control, is generally the portion of the user interface that loads an interactive map.
Convex hull: A convex hull is a shape that represents the minimum convex geometry that encloses all shapes in the specified data set. The generated shape is similar to wrapping an elastic band around the data set.
Country code: A unique identifier for a country/region based on the ISO standard. ISO2 is a two-character code for a country/region (for example, US), which ISO3 represents a three-character code (for example, USA).
Degree Minutes Seconds (DMS): The unit of measure for describing latitude and longitude. A degree is 1/360th of a circle. A degree is further divided into 60 minutes, and a minute is divided into 60 seconds.
Delaunay triangulation: A technique for creating a mesh of contiguous, nonoverlapping triangles from a dataset of points. Each triangle's circumscribing circle contains no points from the dataset in its interior.
Digital Elevation Model (DEM): A dataset of elevation values related to a surface, captured over an area in regular intervals using a common datum. DEMs are typically used to represent terrain relief.
Elevation: The vertical distance of a point or an object above or below a reference surface or datum. Generally, the reference surface is mean sea level. Elevation generally refers to the vertical height of land.
Envelope: See Bounding box.
Extended postal code: A postal code that may include more information. For example, in the USA, zip codes have five digits. But, an extended zip code, known as zip+4, includes four more digits. These digits are used to identify a geographic segment within the five-digit delivery area, such as a city block, a group of apartments, or a post office box. Knowing the geographic segment aids in efficient mail sorting and delivery.
Extent: See Bounding box.
Fleet management: The management of commercial vehicles such as cars, trucks, ships, and planes. Fleet management can include a range of functions, such as vehicle financing, maintenance, telematics (tracking and diagnostics) as well as driver, speed, fuel, and health and safety management. Fleet Management is a process used by companies who rely on transportation in their business. The companies want to minimize the risks and reduce their overall transportation and staff costs, while ensuring compliance with government legislation.
GeoJSON: Is a common JSON-based file format used for storing geographical vector data such as points, lines, and polygons. For more information Azure Maps use of an extended version of GeoJSON, see Extended geojson.
GPS (Global Positioning System): A system of satellites used for determining a devices position on the earth. The orbiting satellites transmit signals that allow a GPS receiver anywhere on earth to calculate its own location through trilateration.
Heading: The direction something is pointing or facing. See also Bearing.
Isochrone: An isochrone defines the area in which someone can travel within a specified time for a mode of transportation in any direction from a given location. See also Reachable Range.
Isodistance: Given a location, an isochrone defines the area in which someone can travel within a specified distance for a mode of transportation in any direction. See also Reachable Range.
Map Tile: A rectangular image that represents a partition of a map canvas. For more information, see Zoom levels and tile grid.
Mercator projection: A cylindrical map projection that became the standard map projection for nautical purposes because of its ability to represent lines of constant course, known as rhumb lines, as straight segments that conserve the angles with the meridians. All flat map projections distort the shapes or sizes of the map when compared to the true layout of the Earth's surface. The Mercator projection exaggerates areas far from the equator, such that smaller areas appear larger on the map as you approach the poles.
MultiPolygon: A geometry that represents a collection of Polygon objects. For example, to show the boundary of Hawaii, each island would be outlined with a polygon. Thus, the boundary of Hawaii would thus be a MultiPolygon.
Post code: See Postal code.
Postal code: A series of letters or numbers, or both, in a specific format. The postal-code is used by the postal service of a country/region to divide geographic areas into zones in order to simplify delivery of mail.
Primary key: The first of two subscription keys provided for Azure Maps shared key authentication. See Shared key authentication.
Prime meridian: A line of longitude that represents 0-degrees longitude. Generally, longitude values decrease when traveling in a westerly direction until 180 degrees and increase when traveling in easterly directions to -180-degrees.
Projection: A projected coordinate system based on a map projection such as transverse Mercator, Albers equal area, and Robinson. Projection enables the earth's spherical surface to be represented on a two-dimensional Cartesian coordinate plane. Projected coordinate systems are sometimes referred to as map projections.
Quadkey: A base-4 address index for a tile within a
quadtree tiling system. For more information, see Zoom levels and tile grid.
Quadtree: A data structure in which each node has exactly four children. The tiling system used in Azure Maps uses a 'quadtree' structure such that as a user zooms in one level, each map tile breaks up into four subtiles. For more information, see Zoom levels and tile grid.
Raster data: A matrix of cells (or pixels) organized into rows and columns (or a grid) where each cell contains a value representing information, such as temperature. Raster's include digital aerial photographs, imagery from satellites, digital pictures, and scanned maps.
Reachable range: A reachable range defines the area in which someone can travel within a specified time or distance, for a mode of transportation to travel, in any direction from a location. See also Isochrone and Isodistance.
REST service: The acronym REST stands for Representational State Transfer. A REST service is a URL-based web service that relies on basic web technology to communicate, the most common methods being HTTP GET and POST requests. These types of services tend to me much quicker and smaller than traditional SOAP-based services.
Reproject: See Transformation.
REST service: Acronym for Representational State Transfer. An architecture for exchanging information between peers in a decentralized, distributed environment. REST allows programs on different computers to communicate independently of an operating system or platform. A service can send a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) request to a uniform resource locator (URL) and get back data.
Requests Per Second (RPS): See Queries Per Second (QPS).
RSS: Acronym for Really Simple Syndication, Resource Description Framework (RDF) Site Summary, or Rich Site Summary, depending on the source. A simple, structured XML format for sharing content among different Web sites. RSS documents include key metadata elements such as author, date, title, a brief description, and a hypertext link. This information helps a user (or an RSS publisher service) decide what materials are worth further investigation.
Secondary key: The second of two subscriptions keys provided for Azure Maps shared key authentication. See Shared key authentication.
Shared key authentication: Shared Key authentication relies on passing Azure Maps account generated keys with each request to Azure Maps. These keys are often referred to as subscription keys. It's recommended that keys are regularly regenerated for security. Two keys are provided so that you can maintain connections using one key while regenerating the other. When you regenerate your keys, you must update any applications that access this account to use the new keys. To learn more about Azure Maps authentication, see Azure Maps and Microsoft Entra ID and Manage authentication in Azure Maps.
Spherical Mercator projection: See Web Mercator.
Spatial reference: A coordinate-based local, regional, or global system used to precisely locate geographical entities. It defines the coordinate system used to relate map coordinates to locations in the real world. Spatial references ensure spatial data from different layers, or sources, can be integrated for accurate viewing or analysis. Azure Maps uses the EPSG:3857 coordinate reference system and WGS 84 for input geometry data.
SQL spatial: Refers to the spatial functionality built into SQL Azure and SQL Server 2008 and above. This spatial functionality is also available as a .NET library that can be used independently of SQL Server. For more information, see Spatial Data (SQL Server).
Subscription key: See Shared key authentication.
Synchronous request: An HTTP request opens a connection and waits for a response. Browsers limit the number of concurrent HTTP requests that can be made from a page. If multiple long running synchronous requests are made at the same time, then this limit can be reached. Requests are delayed until one of the other requests has completed.
Temporal data: Data that specifically refers to times or dates. Temporal data may refer to discrete events, such as lightning strikes; moving objects, such as trains; or repeated observations, such as counts from traffic sensors.
Thematic maps: A thematic map is a simple map made to reflect a theme about a geographic area. A common scenario for this type of map is to color the administrative regions such as countries/regions based on some metric of data.
Tile layer: A layer displayed by assembling map tiles (rectangular sections) into a continuous layer. The tiles are either raster image tiles or vector tiles. Raster tile layers are typically rendered ahead of time, and they're stored as images on a server. Raster tile layers may use a large storage space. Vector tile layers are rendered near real time within the client application. Thus, the server-side storage requirements are smaller for vector tile layers.
Time zone: A region of the globe that observes a uniform standard time for legal, commercial, and social purposes. Time zones tend to follow the boundaries of countries/regions and their subdivisions.
- One transaction is created for every 15 map or traffic tiles requested.
- One transaction is created for each API call to one of the services in Azure Maps. Searching and routing are examples of Azure Maps service.
Transformation: The process of converting data between different geographic coordinate systems. You may, for example, have some data that was captured in the United Kingdom and based on the OSGB 1936 geographic coordinate system. Azure Maps uses the EPSG:3857 coordinate reference system variant of WGS84. As such to display the data correctly, it needs to have its coordinates transformed from one system to another.
Vector tile: An open data specification for storing geospatial vector data using the same tile system as the map control. See also Tile layer.
Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP): A class of problems, in which a set of ordered routes for a fleet of vehicles is calculated while taking into consideration as set of constraints. These constraints may include delivery time windows, multiple route capacities, and travel duration constraints.
Voronoi diagram: A partition of space into areas, or cells, that surrounds a set of geometric objects, usually point features. These cells, or polygons, must satisfy the criteria for Delaunay triangles. All locations within an area are closer to the object it surrounds than to any other object in the set. Voronoi diagrams are often used to delineate areas of influence around geographic features.
Waypoint: A waypoint is a specified geographical location defined by longitude and latitude that is used for navigational purposes. Often used to represent a point in which someone navigates a route through.
Waypoint optimization: The process of reordering a set of waypoints to minimize the travel time or distance required to pass through all provided waypoints. Depending on the complexity of the optimization, this optimization is often referred to as the Traveling Salesmen Problem or Vehicle Routing Problem.
Web Map Service (WMS): WMS is an Open Geographic Consortium (OGC) standard that defines image-based map services. WMS services provide map images for specific areas within a map on demand. Images include prerendered symbology and may be rendered in one of several named styles if defined by the service.
Web Mercator: Also known as Spherical Mercator projection. It's a slight variant of the Mercator projection, one used primarily in Web-based mapping programs. It uses the same formulas as the standard Mercator projection as used for small-scale maps. However, the Web Mercator uses the spherical formulas at all scales, but large-scale Mercator maps normally use the ellipsoidal form of the projection. The discrepancy is imperceptible at the global scale, but it causes maps of local areas to deviate slightly from true ellipsoidal Mercator maps, at the same scale.
WGS84: A set of constants used to relate spatial coordinates to locations on the surface of the map. The WGS84 datum is the standard one used by most online mapping providers and GPS devices. Azure Maps uses the EPSG:3857 coordinate reference system variant of WGS84.
Z-coordinate: See Altitude.
Zip code: See Postal code.
Zoom level: Specifies the level of detail and how much of the map is visible. When zoomed all the way to level 0, the full world map is often visible. But, the map shows limited details such as country/region names, borders, and ocean names. When zoomed in closer to level 17, the map displays an area of a few city blocks with detailed road information. In Azure Maps, the highest zoom level is 22. For more information, see the Zoom levels and tile grid documentation.