Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Google Maps Apps of the Week

Hurtigruten: Minute by Minute

Norwegian Public Service broadcaster NRK this week live broadcasted the voyage of the cruise liner Hurtigruten around the Norway coastline for 134 hours. As well as amazing live footage you could follow the position of the cruise liner on a real-time Google Map.

The cruise is now over but you can still view video of the event. If you click on any of the red dots on the ship's track on the map you can replay the video for that section of the voyage.

New Zealand 100% Pure

Tourism New Zealand has implemented a very clever and striking website using Google Maps in conjunction with a series of related background images.

As you use scroll through the New Zealand 100% Pure website the background images change to create some impressive effects. The scrolling images are used to create animated clouds moving across still landscape images or to provide a narrative, for examples as the people portrayed in the images move around.

The effect of the scrolling images is hard to explain, so you really need to see it yourself on the 100% Pure website. When you visit the page notice how the Google Maps inset changes as you scroll the page to reflect the location of the current background image shown on the page.

Map Icons Collection

This one isn't a map but if you are a map developer you will want to permanently bookmark this website.

I rarely make a Google Map without using map markers from the Map Icons Collection. The collection has more than 600 free icons which you can use as map markers with the Google Maps API, which means you can nearly always find a marker that fits the purpose and design of your map.

The collection has previously been hosted on Google Projects but now has its very own website. With the new website comes two cool new features, styles and custom colors. The custom colors feature allows you to change the color of any map marker to fit the style of your map and website. The style feature lets you choose from seven different style of marker, including iPhone, gradient and classic.

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