Web maps are generally made up of many small, square images called tiles, which are placed side by side in order to create the illusion of a very large seamless image [for a good explanation, see here].
Tiled based maps can be made up of many tiles. Loading all those tiles would be inefficient and slow. That is where the MBtiles, developed by Mapbox, come in. The MBtiles specification is an efficient format for storing millions of tiles in a single SQLite database.
I have written before about Tilemill, a great tool to create great looking interactive maps. Since then more tools have come available to create MBtiles. Continue reading “Exporting rasters to Mbtiles using GDAL”