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Tools for improving web maps. The centerpiece of the code is a client implementation of the MBTiles interaction specification.


  • wax.tooltip
  • wax.legend

Modest Maps

Modest Maps is the primary target for Wax, given its simplicity and high quality.

  • wax.interaction()
  • wax.zoomer()
  • wax.zoombox()
  • wax.boxselect()
  • wax.pointselector()
  • wax.legend()
  • wax.fullscreen()
  • wax.zoombox()
  • wax.hash()


  • wax.ol.Interaction
  • wax.ol.Legend
  • wax.ol.Embedder
  • wax.ol.Switcher

Google Maps API v3

  • wax.g.Controls
  • wax.g.MapType
  • wax.g.mapBoxLogo


The main usage of mapping frameworks through Wax is via records. Records are pure JSON objects that have a 1:1 representation with function Javascript code, but, unlike imperative code, can be stored and manipulated as configuration. Records are tested with polymaps, openlayers, Modest Maps and Google Maps API v3, but the system (/lib/record.js) is generalized beyond mapping tools of any sort, to exist as a basic Javascript AST interpreter.

Currently records support several control techniques:

  • @new instantiates objects
  • @chain runs functions, changing the value of this with each run
  • @inject runs a function in a @chain without changing the reference to this
  • @call runs a function from the global scope changing the value of this
  • @literal allows an object attribute to be referenced
  • @group runs a set of record statements (e.g. using the keywords above) in order

These techniques (with arbitrary levels of nesting), are sufficient to construct maps in each mapping framework.


Usage Examples

Samples of usage can be found in examples/. These depend on localizing copies of each API code.

To set up the examples first run:

make ext

Then check out the example html files.

Building library

For wax users, a minified library is already provided in build/.

But for developers you can rebuild a minified library by running:

make build

Install mainline UglifyJS:

npm install

Make the combined & minified OpenLayers & Google Maps libraries:

rm -r build
make build

Building docs

Wax uses docco for documention. Install it like:

npm install --dev

Make the docs:

make doc


Wax currently includes one external:


  • Tom MacWright (tmcw)
  • Young Hahn (yhahn)
  • Will White (willwhite)