Google unveils widgets to personalize maps

Mapplets let users gather data from multiple sources

Google announced Wednesday new widgets called Mapplets that will let users gather data from multiple sources to personalize maps.

By adding mini-applications like real-time weather conditions or listings of local events, Google hopes to make it easier for non-technical users to easily build maps with dynamic content, according to a blog posting by Google product manager Thai Tran.

"We noticed many of these mashups simply displayed a static set of places on a map, such as the best bars in San Francisco, yet the authors had to set up a website and write Javascript code to generate the map, which is not something that we could expect the average person to do." Tran wrote. "We also noticed that much of this great content was not getting discovered, even though millions of users were coming to Google Maps every day and searching."

With the new Mapplets, a user looking for a home in Chicago could add Mapplets that display real estate listings and Chicago Transit Authority train lines, Tran said.

In a separate announcement, WeatherBug, which provides live local weather information online, said Wednesday that it has created a Mapplet for Google Maps that puts temperature markers on the map from WeatherBug's network of tracking stations and weather sensors worldwide.

The WeatherBug Mapplet also includes the delivery of severe weather alerts, traffic updates and live camera images the company said. When users click on temperature or camera icons on the map, additional content like wind direction, wind speed and weather alerts are displayed.

Mapplets can be accessed under a new "My Maps" tab at Google Maps that brings the Mapplets together with the first version of My Maps, which was released in April to allow users to drop place marks onto a map to create personalized map. Since the launch of the first version, more than 4 million maps have been created, according to Google.

A preview version of Mapplets announced in May resulted in more than 100 developers submitting Mapplets in a month, Google added

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Heather Havenstein

Computerworld
Show Comments

Brand Post

Imou: At home with security

Modern living is all about functionality and security for everybody from the very young to the very old. With Imou anybody can enjoy smart life – the solution is at their fingertips.

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?