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Tech Tips, Tricks & Trivia

by 'Anil' Radhakrishna
An architect's notes, experiments, discoveries and annotated bookmarks.

Search from over a hundred HOW TO articles, Tips and Tricks

Road maps of Indian cities on the Web

Creating road maps for India is a tough job. It's a bustling country full of idiosyncrasies. Not just street names even city names can change overnight based on popular or political sentiments. In the past decade, names of four major cities Bombay, Calcutta, Madras and Bangalore have been changed to Mumbai, Kolkota, Chennai and Benguluru respectively.

However, Road maps are essential for India's teeming millions and luckily there are quite a few free mapping services for India on the Web that do a fair job, notably:
Live Maps India has recently added a lot of detail including Street Maps for 9 important Indian cities (Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune, Ahmedabad, and Jaipur), Location Search, Business Search and driving directions. The driving directions include detailed textual map directions like in Yahoo Maps India but unlike Google Maps. It supports fuzzy search, the keywords you type need not be precisely spelt. Although not very comprehensive (I could not locate Microsoft's Hyderabad office, Hyderabad Central mall and Maitrivanam - the birth place of Hyderbad's IT story, on the Hyderabad map) it is definitely promising.

Google Maps, Yahoo Maps and Live Maps/Virtual Earth provide APIs to programmatically fetch maps & derive practical benefit from geographical info. I have found Live Maps/Virtual Earth the easiest to work with.

As per the Windows Live Web Services Terms of Use, Sites or Web applications with fewer than one million unique users pay no fees and the Virtual Earth service is free up to 3 million map tiles/month.

All the above three services support interesting keyboard shortcuts. You can use Arrow keys to Pan , "+" to zoom in, "-" to zoom out. In Live Maps, you can use Ctrl and Arrow keys to pan faster.

I know it's going to be long but I look forward to the day when Traffic tracking can be done through these online maps.

Related links -
HOW TO visually find the latitude & longitude of any town/city using Virtual Earth Map Control 6

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Posted by Anonymous Anonymous | 12/13/2008 11:36:00 PM

Dont forget OpenstreetMaps which is catching up quite quickly in India.


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