Online travel map
July 6, 2006 7:15 PM   Subscribe

I want to create a map, marking every town I've ever been to on my travels around Australia and the world. I have a pin-board at home where I've done this, but it would be cool to create an online version. In this Web 2.oh world, what's the best Google Maps hack to use to achieve this? Note that I don't want to write the code to do this through the API myself - I'm just looking for a site that lets me easily place markers on my own personal Google Map, and associate some very basic information with each marker.
posted by Jimbob to Computers & Internet (20 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
User number 1490, huh? :)
posted by intermod at 7:41 PM on July 6, 2006

What about Frappr?
posted by Addlepated at 7:43 PM on July 6, 2006

Response by poster: Yep, user 1490 ;)

Thanks for the suggestions - both are what I'm looking for, but both suffer from major problems.


Has a great interface, simple, functional. However, it is using the old Google Maps API - which doesn't feature road and location data for Australia. If they rectify this, it might be what I'm after.


Oh my god, this looks like the MySpace of mapping. I have seen Frappr before, and it wasn't always like this was it? Messy, ugly, unusable - the map is surrounded by boxes filled with ads and user profiles and groups and "send a message" boxes. Sometimes the page resizes so it doesn't fit horizontally into my browser window. After I add a point to the map, it zooms back out to the full extent. I centered the map on Pt Arthur, Tasmania, added a point called "Pt Arthur", and the point ended up in Texas. And I can see no way to delete or move the point.

However, it does use the newer Map, with Australian features on it, so technically I could use this to create my map. I'd just be too embarrased to show it to anyone.
posted by Jimbob at 8:13 PM on July 6, 2006
posted by pinto at 8:36 PM on July 6, 2006

Response by poster: Hmmm Mapbuilder has a nice interface - one click waypoint adding is exactly what I'm after. Alas, it too uses the older Google Maps API with no Australian location data.
posted by Jimbob at 8:46 PM on July 6, 2006

Dowload google earth. Type in darwin, australia, for example, and you can probably see your very own house. No kidding. You can add flags, labels, whaever. I love it. it's free too.
posted by bim at 9:07 PM on July 6, 2006

...and Fannie Bay looks pretty.
posted by bim at 9:11 PM on July 6, 2006

Response by poster: Fannie Bay is pretty. ;)

I have been considering doing this on Google Earth, I realise it would be perfect - but is there an easy way to export all the points I add onto my Google Earth map back onto a map on the web, so I can show people online?
posted by Jimbob at 9:19 PM on July 6, 2006

Yes, there are numerous options for showing your places to others such as emailing an image or posting an image somewhere or if you have computer savvy friends you can give them a file with the coordinates. And port arthur, australia (don't mention tasmania) is definitely on the map!

posted by bim at 9:36 PM on July 6, 2006

smackfu posted travlist on projects a while ago, which can produce an image like this. Not sure if it will suit altogether, but it sounds like what you're looking for.
posted by jacalata at 9:41 PM on July 6, 2006

Response by poster: travlist looks good, but seems (as far as I can see) to rely on you typing in the names of places known, rather than pointing to them on a map.
posted by Jimbob at 9:52 PM on July 6, 2006

You're right - you can add places, but I just missed and placed a marker for Brisbane somewhere near Rockhampton. I would probably go with Google Earth, for your needs. It would be nice if everyone would update to include the Australian map details though - then wayfaring would be useful.
posted by jacalata at 10:12 PM on July 6, 2006

Thanks to both of you, I have now figured out that I had the wrong country code for Australia. Oops. It's supposed to look up the lat/long automatically, but I had never realized it was broken there.

Given that, I'm still not sure it's right for what you want. But thanks for taking a look.
posted by smackfu at 10:29 PM on July 6, 2006

Okay, so it's not Google Maps, but I super love Bryan Boyer's Indy Junior—it's attractive, elegant, and all you need to do to get it running is edit an xml file!
posted by lia at 10:39 PM on July 6, 2006

Response by poster: I'll give travlist another go, smackfu, we'll see how well it looks up locations based on the names. The only reason it's not ideal is that it wants a little too much information from me. You know, I'm adding information on places I went camping when I was 11 years old - I don't have days and times and routes - but I guess I can fake it for the same effect. Otherwise I'll give Google Earth a try.
posted by Jimbob at 12:04 AM on July 7, 2006

Best answer: Have you looked at Very similar interface to Google Maps, with the ability to tag and annotate.
posted by pivotal at 2:54 AM on July 7, 2006

but is there an easy way to export all the points I add onto my Google Earth map back onto a map on the web, so I can show people online?


Create a bunch of locations in Google Earth. Then export it to a GoogleMaps "KML" document. This is actually just an XML document. Because it's just XML, it's very, very easy to then import it into a Google Maps web page using (gasp) AJAX, since XML is the primary transport for the requests. I coded something up for someone a while back that imports KML files, but you'll still need to get a Google API key in order to host your own maps. If you're interested, I can look for the code.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:07 AM on July 7, 2006

Response by poster: Well, I may be completely stupid, but I can only get sattelite images in Google Earths. Doesn't it have normal road maps? Well, it doesn't appear to for Australia, anyway. It only shows very major roads, and major towns. So, it's not very useful.

However, flagr wins. It does everything I want.
posted by Jimbob at 5:11 AM on July 7, 2006

Plazes is new and really really cool. Its got an API as well.
posted by ejoey at 5:49 AM on July 7, 2006

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