NY Web Standards Meetup—Web Mapping Part Two: Google Maps and Beyond

February 22nd, 2008  |  programming, web development, web mapping

Notes and links from last night's presentation on web mapping and the Google Maps API to the New York Web Standards Meetup Group. Thanks to everyone who made it!

Please contact us if you'd like to present at the March or April meetup.

Listen to Part 1 of this event

Listen to Part 2 of this event

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Web Mapping Part Two: Google Maps and Beyond

We'll discuss best practices, our favorite mashups, and what makes the good ones so good. We’d also like to see if anyone in the group has any experience with the Mapstraction library.

Google Maps Wrap-up

Last month we talked a little bit about web mapping in general and ran through a Google Maps tutorial. All of the materials from last month's meetup are available on our website, including a podcast of the presentation.

Any questions about developing Google Maps? Any observations?

Other Mapping APIs

Has anyone here worked with Yahoo! Maps, Live Earth, or MapQuest? If so, what do you think?

I remember that Marco was very concerned about the fact that Google is a corporation last month, but OpenLayers is an open source solution.

I briefly worked with MapQuest in 2006, prior to driving directions in Google Maps, but I found it kind of a pain and would stick with Google—their API is faster, cuter, and easier

When initially working with the the MapQuest OpenAPI, I had a lot of difficulty getting the map to render correctly. The culprit turned out to be the DOCTYPE directive! Remove it if you want your map to display at all in Firefox and correctly in IE. Not sure if this is still true.

Open Discussion

What are the best practices when doing a mashup? Is it using abstraction layers? What makes a good UI? What are people’s favorite mashups and why? What makes a good one so good?

Google has a New Year's Resolution to help produce more usable maps.

Favorite Mashups

Vincent Lim sent this one: http://www.onnyturf.com/subway/. Custom tiles. Stemless markers.

From Dominic Espinosa: Stamen Design: Oakland Crimespotting

They also released an open source interaction library called Modest Maps for displaying tile-based maps like Google's in Flash.

NYC bike maps
CrimeStat 2.0

MapCruncher

Mapstraction—Client-side abstraction layer