Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Still on a GIS kick! I was introduced to GIS several years ago. Not web based maps - those have been around for years, but using GIS to identify and solve real problems. But it is usually best to start simple.

Adding a map or several maps to your web site is incredibly easy. Most of the major map providers like Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, etc. allow you to look up a location and grab a bit of code to add the map to your own web site. Cut and paste, it couldn't be simpler.

But the maps are far from simple. They are usually embedded in an iframe window - literally a web page from the map provider displayed in a little window inside your own web page. These maps are quite powerful and usually have a good sub-set of the features found on the full page maps of the map providers. You can pan around the map and zoom in and out. Links to provide driving directions are available and additional information is often found on the map.

Now, what to do with those maps! Obvious solutions include providing the location(s) of your business or groups meeting place. You can also show all the locations where you've done work, especially if the work is readily visible and you are using them as references. You can show all the places you've been on vacation, played team sports, taken photos or visited geocaches. I've also enjoyed looking at the map of all the visitors to my blog. Thank you for coming by and putting a dot on my map.

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