Google Maps

They are a busy bunch over at the 'plex aren't they. Google Maps is pretty neat on first impressions. Cooler than other map folks anyway. Looks like it is only US for now. Here are the features (from )

  • Draggable maps – you can click and drag Google maps to view adjacent sections; no more long waits while new areas download.
  • Integrated Local search results – Google Maps integrates local search results from Google Local. So to find a pizza place, simply type in "pizza in San Jose", and pizza places appear at various locations on your map, with phone numbers for each location on the right side of the page.
  • Turn-by-turn directions – Type in an address and Google Maps plots the route for you, displaying it visually on the map itself, together with step-by-step directions for getting there (or back from there). When you click on one of these steps (say, "turn left"), you see a floating bubble with a magnified view of the area mentioned in the directions.
  • Keyboard shortcuts – You can use arrow keys to pan left, right, up and down. The Page Up, Page Down, Home and End keys let you pan out even wider. And you can zoom in with the plus (+) key and zoom out with the minus (-) key.
On one search I did I got a Firefox error saying that "A script on this page is causing your computer to run slowly. If it continues your computer may become unresponsive" or something like that. I cancelled it and the directions came up. All in all though, I'll probably be using this in preference to others when planning my next great US roadtrip!

Update: Joel Webber provides a peek under the covers and explains how the Google Maps app works.

Posted by Paul in Search Tech at February 8, 2005 06:15 AM