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June 24, 2008

Google Map Maker


Google Maps doesn't have street-level maps or information about local businesses for many countries. To make the service more useful in countries like Cyprus, Vietnam, Iceland, Pakistan and the Caribbean islands, Google launched Map Maker, a way to add or edit features, such as roads, businesses, parks, schools, and place them on a map. After submitting the information, it will be available at the Map Maker sites for other users to edit it and you could expect to see it live in Google Maps when Google decides there's enough information.

Google recommends to use the hybrid view to locate places precisely and to zoom in to a range of 50m to 1km. You can add businesses using placemarks, mark roads with the line tool and add parks using polygons. This wiki offers more information about locating features and tutorials for all the tools that can be used to improve the maps. "This product is a labor of love by many engineers based in Bangalore who have a desire to see the world mapped," explains Google.


Another collaborative mapping service is OpenStreetMap, that licenses all the data as Creative Commons Share-Alike. The project's motivation is to create a "a free dataset which will enable programmers, social activists, cartographers and the like to fulfill their plans without being limited either by Google's API or by their Terms of Service. The data used in Google Maps is sourced from NAVTEQ and Tele Atlas, two big mapping companies. They, in turn, have obtained some of this data from national mapping agencies (such as the Ordnance Survey). Since they've made multi-million pound investments in gathering this data, these organizations are understandably protective of their copyright."

It would be interesting to see if Google decides to change the licensing terms for the data obtained from users. In the past months, Google started to allow users to edit inaccurate addresses, to add places and to collaborate on maps.

20 comments:

  1. Can't see Taiwan Maps Info....

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  2. Excellent! Started contributing to my neighborhood already. Is it possible to upload GPS tracklogs for road data?

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  3. @arnar seriously! I really hope they let us upload GPS tracklogs like OpenStreetMap

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  4. It would be great if Google opened this tool for other locations. I know few seaside towns im my neighbourhood, here in Poland, that exist on Google Maps only as a names, without any streets. Moreover, the situation gets worse - I'm pretty sure they erased few streets in other towns. Not to mention the satellite shots of this area, which sucks.

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  5. I don't think their current data suppliers such as AND, Europa Technologies, Navteq (=Nokia) and Tele Atlas (=TomTom) are happy with this initiative.

    Also, is the data from i.e. Nigeria, Bolivia, Peru also created by Google such as Kenya and India???

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  6. would like available worldwide.
    Would love to be able to draw lines and get then download lat/long of the points that constitute the line.

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  7. why use google map maker when you can already use OpenStreetMap for the whole World!

    Ed
    http://edwardmjohnson.wordpress.com/

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  8. I think with the start of Google Map Maker, there will not be any problem with other data providers. Like India and Kenya, Google created data for other countries like Nigeria, Bolivia, Peru.

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  9. The technology has ever been ont the rise.. Today they just show the streets.. In a matter of years you can expect the map to point your house...

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  10. Nice, but when will they add "Saudi Arabia", we desperately need google maps to be updated!

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  11. Finally this was something for which I was waiting for. Already working on my district headquarter city alone, but, there are some problems, like Bahawalpur is marked as district, the whole image of Bahawalpur City is there but no marking of it as a city, there is also no tool by which we can select cities. And there is my native town, for which I tried to map but moderator responded image is not clear. Where we can get in touch with google about it? There are couple of handy error occurring too, there should be some forum where we can upload the problems and suggestions.

    Nice Work!

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  12. Is this Google's first step in becoming the global Yelp? I think so.
    Polling this at tinycrunch.com

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  13. Dear all, some politics seems to have taken centre stage here. Take a look:

    http://groups.google.com/group/google-mapmaker/browse_thread/thread/559a6a5efb1753b1

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  14. google map should be updated. especially Indian states Karnataka, tamil nadu and KERALA.
    it is nice to map in google map maker.

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  15. Please Update Google Maps for Islamabad Pakistan...complete and fully correct map is made on Map Editor and its sad to know that Google Maps doesn't support it...

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  16. Please Update Google Maps !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  17. Google have 160+ countries and we're still missing Saudi Arabia.

    Google used Navteq maps for Saudi Arabia which are BAD, outdated and useless. They should use teleatlas

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  18. google.com is bad search engine where is the saudi arabia country in Google map maker colum...

    It's very very to bad programmer for your google organization total waste you know.

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  19. But there s a problem. Whenever i try to add i get error in Working hours google map maker "Internal Error: Some part of this change seems bad. Please report this error"

    please help

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  20. Let me tell you something.

    There is a big country called SAUDI ARABIA you didn't add to google map maker.

    Shame on you "google map maker" developers.

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