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I have some shapefiles & I want to implement some known GIS algorithms (buffer, intersection, voronoi, etc) & serve the results using an Openlayers UI through WPS.

A minimal setup could be a WPS platform & and a web page having some Openlayers code.

I did a quick search in ZOO & 52-north but I am not sure where to start. My feeling is that ZOO intergrates better with Openlayers but even the installation seems too complicated..

Any ideas or even better any success stories (just to avoid re-inventing the wheel)?

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I don't know ZOO (but it's seem a very interesting piece of software).

For my own usage, I installed the Open Source GIS chain : - OpenLayer - Geoserver - PostgreSQL (PostGis).

You can make some not so simple operations directly in SQL with PostGis. If you need more computing power, use a script with the Java library Geotools or use QGis.

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    Well, the whole idea is to experiment a bit with variations of voroi algorithms & serve the results through WPS. To use GeoServer & Opelayers it isn't a bad idea at all... – user26047 Jan 26 '14 at 18:09
  • Yes, I forget to say that make a WPS server available with Geoserver is piece of cake. – Jérôme B Jan 27 '14 at 9:33
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PyWPS - simple, Python-based 52North - complex, Java Zoo - zoo of languages :-) GeoServer - well, GeoServer

None of them is tingly coupled with OpenLayers. There is generic WPS client on OpenLayers 2, which should be working with all server side implementations

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