How do I map-out my world travels using Google Maps?
March 2, 2006 8:18 AM   Subscribe

How do I map-out my world travels using Google Maps?

I would like to show my friends and family where I've been using a connect the dots with lines from location to location using Google Maps.

What is a good website that uses a program (for free) to do that?
posted by bamassippi to Computers & Internet (12 answers total)
Don't use google maps, use Google Earth. It won't draw a line, but you can make a slideshow of sorts that will fly from one place on earth to the other in the order that you specfiy. The graphics are awesome, and it's really fun to watch as you cross oceans and zoom in on various spots on the planet.
posted by crapples at 8:44 AM on March 2, 2006

A while back, I couldn't find anything I liked to do this, so I wrote my own. An example map.

(I had grand plans for that site, but I got busy and never got around to really launching it. So I'm the only user. But I figured you might find it useful since it's spot-on for this question.)
posted by smackfu at 9:04 AM on March 2, 2006

Though not really for this purpose, GMaps Pedometer might do the trick.

I did something similar, simply using screenshots of Google Maps and image software.
posted by bwilms at 9:59 AM on March 2, 2006

Nice work, smackfu. I think a lot of people would find this useful. I sure do.
posted by cerbous at 10:47 AM on March 2, 2006

It sounds to me like you're Wayfaring's target audience. They're a free GoogleMaps mashup that will draw lines for you and let you keep multiple maps and give you tools to share them network with others - in other words, your typical Web 2.0 endeavor. I'm not sure how they deal with international travel, though.

Does GoogleMaps even have reliable coverage outside of the US?
posted by coolhappysteve at 11:54 AM on March 2, 2006

Scratch that bit about being unsure about international travel: it looks like they're perfect for you!
posted by coolhappysteve at 11:55 AM on March 2, 2006

Bamassippi, I'm currently trying out Wayfaring's maps on my blog for my upcoming world trip. They seem good (although Wayfaring seems to have problems crossing the International Date Line), but I'm also thinking of playing around with Google Maps' own API. I don't know if you have any programming experience, but that's an option as well.

No matter what you end up doing, have a great time! I've bene working on this trip for almost a year now, and I can't wait to get going.
posted by Gaz Errant at 12:58 PM on March 2, 2006

If you do have any programming experience, it's not too tough to do a Google Maps mashup using the API (even if it's your first dabbling with XML and JavaScript, which it was for me). There are lots of examples out there. Here's what I came up with, and the data.xml file that drives it. Feel free to steal the code (all the heavy lifting is done on the main map page). Or, use some of these super helpful resources:

API Docs
Free geocoder (US only but still helpful.)

Also, you can get the lat/long of any location by moving the map to where you want to go and clicking the permalink link. Then the lat/long is displayed in the URL.
posted by heydanno at 3:57 PM on March 2, 2006

(I should note that most of the code I used was itself stolen from other tutorial sites.)
posted by heydanno at 4:00 PM on March 2, 2006

Nice job smackfu.
posted by uni verse at 6:21 PM on March 2, 2006

When journalling my travels in South America, I found that the mapping service that had the best ability to locate places outside of the US and Europe was MSN Mappoint Choose "Find a Place" and pick "World Atlas". It did a good job even for small towns in most places.

There's a developer API, but I didn't look into it because the free trial period was shorter than my trip. I just used it for static maps for each journal entry, not paths, but you could use it to find the latitude and longitude for places and then feed that into another system.
posted by aneel at 6:38 PM on March 2, 2006

(BTW, I ended up making my travList site officially opened and supported and even posted it to Projects, so it's a bit more solid than I made it sound in the above post... and that's enough shillling for me.)
posted by smackfu at 10:26 PM on March 6, 2006

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