Thursday, December 28, 2006

50 Things to do with Google Maps Mashups

(Update (Dec.4/07): See 50 MORE Things to do with Google Maps Mashups!)

Back for an encore are two posts which generated a huge amount of interest in 2006. I put together two posts which listed 25 things you can do with Google Maps mashups. I wanted to prove, with these lists, that these newly introduced mapping applications can be useful in your everyday life. I've put these two posts together to make the following list:

1. Measure your run route or commute
2. Check the time in a world location
3. Look up a US zip code
4. Measure Area
5. Make your own Google Map out of any map
6. Map your photos
7. Check what's on the other side of the world
8. Find a person in the US
9. Check the weather anywhere
10. Find the nearest Starbucks
11. Discover an eBay real estate deal
12. Find airport parking in the US.. or the UK
13. Create a running route
14. Watch a travel video
15. Find Fast Food in the US
16. Buy beer in Ontario
17. Check the news for your zip code
18. Avoid disease outbreak
19. Beat traffic
20. Make your own Google Maps mashup
21. Avoid red light cameras
22. Find cheap gas
23. Check sunrise or sunset times
24. Convert currency
25. Find a place to live in the US
26. Find out where the daylight is right now
27. Find a ski resort anywhere in the world
28. Track a flight on Google Maps
29. Calculate the distance between two world airports
30. Find the elevation/height above sea level
31. Map the 7 Wonders of the World
32. Find a golf course anywhere in the world
33. Click anywhere and get travel info
34. Simulate a flood to show damage effects
35. Fly a plane
36. Search Google Maps in full screen
37. Find a world webcam
38. Find a US or Canadian Library
39. Find a world port
40. Map the fish in your tank
41. Find high risk areas for modern marine pirates
42. Find a world dive site
43. Map Wikipedia articles to their location
44. See where UFOs have been sighted
45. Pray in the direction of Mecca
46. Search eBay items by US zip code
47. Map flight turbulence and pollution
48. Plan a London tube journey
49. Calculate cab fare in New York City
50. Map movie filming locations - US and Canada

See 50 MORE Things to do with Google Maps Mashups!


Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Google Maps adds Singapore, Hong Kong street maps

After posting about the addition of streets, roads and cities for India on Google Maps, Google Blogoscoped has informed me that Singapore and Hong Kong also now have streets available for viewing:


Hong Kong:

As with the India post I suspect mashups will increase in number in these two locations, and sites like Wikimapia and Sightseeing with Google Satellite Maps will see more locations described and added:

Wikimapia: Singapore, Hong Kong
Sightseeing with Google Satellite Maps: Singapore, Hong Kong

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Google Maps adds India

The Google Maps team has made a huge launch of streets, roads and place names for the country of India! Take a look:

Previous to this launch India showed a vast white space with the "Map" view toggled on making only satellite imagery available. The street maps that have been added for Indian cities also show symbols for various amenities such as hotels, police stations, cinemas and more. This is a significant addition for Google Maps due to the size of the population in India that will be able to take advantage of this new mapping data. Also, expats living abroad can now use the hybrid view to zoom in and look at their home city or town. This expanded data is not yet available for Google Maps API sites, but once it is (and it should be very soon) the following sites should improve their usability and coverage for India. The Google Maps mashup activity should definitely pick up in India as well, now that there is some location context to points which are plotted:

Wikimapia (India) - Individuals will now be able to positively identify structures and places with map and hybrid views put to use. This will greatly expand the number of described places on this great service.

Sightseeing with Google Satellite Maps (India) - This list should also fill up with more places confirmed.

India is now on the Google Map! :)

Monday, December 18, 2006

Google Maps: Get from point A to B.. then C & D!

A new feature from Google Maps will help you plan your next roadtrip:

The core Google Maps service has improved its directions feature by allowing you to enter more than 2 locations to plot directions between. Now when you plot directions between 2 points a link appears at the bottom of the instructions to the left labeled "Add Destination".

Click this link to enter more places to add to your route plotting. It doesn't appear to have a limit for the number of locations you can add and it will also auto-complete places from your 'Saved Locations' area if you have this feature enabled. This looks to be active for most Google Maps countries: USA, Canada, UK & Ireland, Japan, Germany, Spain, France and Italy. Perhaps the next feature addition will help NASA plot directions from Earth, the Moon.. then Mars! :)

Monday, December 04, 2006

Google Map Creator makes thematic mapping simple

Quoting from this blog post from Digitally Distributed Environments:

Google Map Creator is a freeware application designed to make thematic mapping using Google Maps simpler. The software is part of the GeoVUE project at CASA, sponsored by the ESRC as a node in the National Centre for e-Social Science.

Available as a free download the software enables a user to import a .shp files and export the data overlayed on Google Maps. Using Google Map Creator it is a simple three step process to go from raw data to visualization on your own webserver. Differing considerably from other similar .shp convertors, the software is available as freeware and aimed at ease of use.

In the pre-release stage a variety of thematic map for different parts of the world were produced to test the viability of the application with real data on production web servers. A complete set of help documentation is provided as well as a worked example providing a step by step guide to creating your first Google Map from .shp data.

Example maps created using this app:
Download Google Map Creator and view online documentation here..