BEST OF TRACK
APS9 / 9:00 am / Wednesday
Chad Killingsworth @chadhikes, Missouri State University
Maps are really fun … wait … WELL DESIGNED maps are really fun
For developers - maps are often overwhelming, very time consuming and under-appreciated. It doesn’t have to be that way — you can have a centralized map that is easily created and maintained.
When Maps Go Bad
- Out of Date
- PDFS or images
- Not enough or too much information
- unfamiliar interface
- Information overload — you don’t have to include EVERYTHING
Don’t Reinvent the Wheel
- Use familiar interfaces
- remember - maps aren’t fun if they require a manual
Print Meets Web … you’re still going to have printed maps. They should coordinate without the online maps.
Customize with markers - and use the same on print and web versions
- bus stops
- bike racks
Google Maps API Versions
Version 2 - Everything but the kitchen sink
- synchronous API - tiles can’t be downloaded until the very end of the loading process
- not designed for mobile devices
- 17-19 seconds for tiles to load on iphone 3G
- now deprecated (you have 3 years to switch to version 3)
Version 3 - specifically designed for Android and iPhone
- released as the official API at Google I/O May
- progressive loading (get you on tiles as soon as possible)
- version 3 doesn’t contain all the features of version 2 (v2 contained a lot of nonmap related features- and those aren’t in v3)
- KML Layers (KML is just XML … you can edit it in notepad!)
Use Google Earth to build out your campus map buildings -
- using the polygon tool you can just draw around each building — and it will create the appropriate KML for you
- Copy the placemark data into your master KML file
Maps on the Go
- iPhone Apps Usage — google maps is the #3 app used by all iphone users
- Android — maps is #2
Can’t we all just get along?
- each platform/device has their own SDK for maps
- Maps API v3 can now run the same code on “all” (all = iphone, android phones); don’t use the native SDK
- should only be thought of as an Application. It just happens to be one that you use web technologies to build.
You can do a lot with student labor. Take advantage of them!
When you get your awesome map up and running … one of your first questions will be:
IS THERE AN APP FOR THAT?
Even though they can just put a bookmark to the webpage on their phones … it’s a stumbling block.
You probe need to think about creating an app … for pure discoverability in the app store.
“If you build it … they will come … “ LOL
The Solution: Hybrid Application
- Write a very basic wrapper application
- Embed a web view
- Point the web view at your map
- You’re done
- Chad’s blog post about his presentation
- Mobile Map Template
- Google Maps API v3 Documentation
- Google Maps API v3 Articles (includes iOS and Android application development how-to)
- Related Blog Posts