Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Google Maps of the Week

The most Tweeted about map this week was RailRadar. RailRadar allows users to view the entire Indian rail network (and all of the currently running trains) live on a Google Map. There are a lot of real-time Google Maps of train systems around the world but this one has to be the biggest.

The map shows the live locations of all trains on the Indian railways in real-time. If users click on an individual train map marker they can view the train's starting point and destination and also the train's next scheduled stop.

The map also displays the overall status of the network, showing the percentage of trains on the network running on time and the percentage that are currently delayed.

La France en Relief is an amazing collection of historical relief maps of French towns.

That in itself would be enough to get map fanatics like me excited. However La France en Relief has gone even further and has taken a number of the featured relief maps and turned them into full 3d cities. In loving detail the city's buildings have been recreated in 3d, allowing users to immerse themselves in the France of the 18th and 19th centuries.

So far eight towns have been created in 3d, including St Tropez, Toulon and Mont Saint Michel. The 3d map of Mont Saint Michel is worth the ticket price on its own - except there is no ticket price and there are also seven more 3d towns to explore. 

Finally, Map of the Drug War in Mexico is a map of drug related homicides in Mexico and a great example of what can be created when you use the Google Maps API with Fusion Tables and a little help from CartoDB.

The map uses custom map markers to display the number of homicides in different locations within Mexico. The size of the markers corresponds to the number of homicides at that location. If the user selects a marker they can view a graph showing the number of homicides over the last eight years.

It is also possible to use the provided drawing tools to search a custom area on the map.

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