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Maps Blog — Oct 2007

  • October
    31

    Starbucks.com Powered by Virtual Earth...

    The folks at Starbucks just made it a whole lot easier to find their stores. They've added some new ways to find their stores as well as filters to find different types of stores and ammenities at those stores using Virtual Earth version 6 no less than 2 weeks after the release. Okay, they had some inside help....:-) Go to Starbucks.com and click "Our Stores" to see the new functionality powered by both Virtual Earth and MapPoint Web Service. You'll notice 3 tabs across the top - Find Store, Find Route and Find Event. Since Find Store is the default, we'll start there. You can put in a whole host of information in this text box - anything from full addresses to just a postal code. You can also put landmarks like "Space Needle" or "Grand Canyon" - there actually is a Starbucks in a nearby Safeway. :) There are filters for limiting your search. You simply need only check the boxes for the filters you want in place. For example, if you only want drive-thru locations (awesome when on the road or a screaming child in the back seat) you check the box adjacent to the "Drive Through Window" box and only drive-thru locations will appear. I think my favorite filter is the "Coming Soon" checkbox... Read More The folks at Starbucks just made it a whole lot easier to find their stores. They've added some new ways to find their stores as well as filters to find different types of stores and ammenities at those stores using Virtual Earth version 6 no less than 2 weeks after the release. Okay, they had some inside help....:-) Go to Starbucks.com and click "Our Stores" to see the new functionality powered by both Virtual Earth and MapPoint Web Service. You'll notice 3 tabs across the top - Find Store, Find Route and Find Event. Since Find Store is the default, we'll start there. You can put in a whole host of information in this text box - anything from full addresses to just a postal code. You can also put landmarks like "Space Needle" or "Grand Canyon" - there actually is a Starbucks in a nearby Safeway. :) There are filters for limiting your search. You simply need only check the boxes for the filters you want in place. For example, if you only want drive-thru locations (awesome when on the road or a screaming child in the back seat) you check the box adjacent to the "Drive Through Window" box and only drive-thru locations will appear. I think my favorite filter is the "Coming Soon" checkbox... Read More
  • October
    29

    New Virtual Earth Case Study - Coldwell...

    We recently launched a new case study (and yes, I'm a little slow getting this out) describing how Coldwell Banker was struggling with the lack of technological innovation around mapping and found Virtual Earth as an answer to their problems. I've plagiarized a bit of the excerpt below to whet your appetite. Coldwell Banker Real Estate Leader Boosts Customer Appeal with Enhanced Online Mapping Technology. In 2005, Coldwell Banker, a leader in using the Internet to sell homes, needed a more innovative approach to online mapping. Its legacy mapping solution could help consumers see a property’s location, but the system was awkward to navigate and provided limited information in regard to surrounding amenities like schools and businesses. After an intensive search for cutting-edge mapping technologies, Coldwell Banker deployed a more powerful and intuitive online solution based on the Microsoft® Virtual Earth™ platform. The flexible and detailed property-search options in the solution’s user interface have helped boost customer usage of the mapping features on the company’s primary Web site by 300 percent and are enabling Coldwell Banker to extend its reputation as an industry innovator... Read More We recently launched a new case study (and yes, I'm a little slow getting this out) describing how Coldwell Banker was struggling with the lack of technological innovation around mapping and found Virtual Earth as an answer to their problems. I've plagiarized a bit of the excerpt below to whet your appetite. Coldwell Banker Real Estate Leader Boosts Customer Appeal with Enhanced Online Mapping Technology. In 2005, Coldwell Banker, a leader in using the Internet to sell homes, needed a more innovative approach to online mapping. Its legacy mapping solution could help consumers see a property’s location, but the system was awkward to navigate and provided limited information in regard to surrounding amenities like schools and businesses. After an intensive search for cutting-edge mapping technologies, Coldwell Banker deployed a more powerful and intuitive online solution based on the Microsoft® Virtual Earth™ platform. The flexible and detailed property-search options in the solution’s user interface have helped boost customer usage of the mapping features on the company’s primary Web site by 300 percent and are enabling Coldwell Banker to extend its reputation as an industry innovator... Read More
  • October
    29

    Virtual Earth - Authenticate and Track...

    So, you want to know what kind of traffic your Virtual Earth application is getting? You want to start licensing Virtual Earth per user? Well, from a technical perspective we've got you covered. Virtual Earth now supports token-based authentication and usage tracking. We've published an article on MSDN explaining how to integrate authentication into your application . You'll need a bit of behind the scenes code. Sorry, we can't have usernames and passwords in JavaScript; well, we could but I doubt you want someone stealing it. The whole authentication system integrates nicely with our current Customer Service Site and MapPoint Web Service reporting infrastructure - for those of you who are using it. Think of all the wondrous things you can do - track all of your applications separately; track each of your users activity separately; download usage reports to perform cost/benefit analysis (yeah, I have an MBA - I know it's important!); validate if you're in violation of our terms of use - wohoo! All fun, fun stuff for you data heads. And, yes, it's live today so go nuts. CP So, you want to know what kind of traffic your Virtual Earth application is getting? You want to start licensing Virtual Earth per user? Well, from a technical perspective we've got you covered. Virtual Earth now supports token-based authentication and usage tracking. We've published an article on MSDN explaining how to integrate authentication into your application . You'll need a bit of behind the scenes code. Sorry, we can't have usernames and passwords in JavaScript; well, we could but I doubt you want someone stealing it. The whole authentication system integrates nicely with our current Customer Service Site and MapPoint Web Service reporting infrastructure - for those of you who are using it. Think of all the wondrous things you can do - track all of your applications separately; track each of your users activity separately; download usage reports to perform cost/benefit analysis (yeah, I have an MBA - I know it's important!); validate if you're in violation of our terms of use - wohoo! All fun, fun stuff for you data heads. And, yes, it's live today so go nuts. CP
  • October
    23

    Virtual Earth Web Casts

    I have a few web casts that may be of interest if you want to get more information about Virtual Earth. You should register for the web cast that lines up with your respective role - partner, business decision maker or developer. I'll have just come back from Rwanda (like, the day prior), so at the very least I could be comically disoriented from Malaria. We'll see. Virtual Earth Briefing: What’s New in the latest VE Platform release, pricing, licensing, training resources, and the upcoming VE Data Visualization Specialization exam Partner Readiness - Join this briefing to learn about the latest release of the Virtual Earth Platform, including new features and capability, pricing, licensing, and resources for partners. You'll also hear about upcoming VE online partner training that will be available via the Partner Learning Center, and how to register for the Virtual Earth Data Visualization exam beta, to qualify for the Data Visualization Specialization. Microsoft Webcast: See How Virtual Earth 6.0 Provides an Immersive Web Experience (Level 100) Business Decision Maker - The Microsoft Virtual Earth platform is an integrated set of services providing quality geospatial data,... Read More I have a few web casts that may be of interest if you want to get more information about Virtual Earth. You should register for the web cast that lines up with your respective role - partner, business decision maker or developer. I'll have just come back from Rwanda (like, the day prior), so at the very least I could be comically disoriented from Malaria. We'll see. Virtual Earth Briefing: What’s New in the latest VE Platform release, pricing, licensing, training resources, and the upcoming VE Data Visualization Specialization exam Partner Readiness - Join this briefing to learn about the latest release of the Virtual Earth Platform, including new features and capability, pricing, licensing, and resources for partners. You'll also hear about upcoming VE online partner training that will be available via the Partner Learning Center, and how to register for the Virtual Earth Data Visualization exam beta, to qualify for the Data Visualization Specialization. Microsoft Webcast: See How Virtual Earth 6.0 Provides an Immersive Web Experience (Level 100) Business Decision Maker - The Microsoft Virtual Earth platform is an integrated set of services providing quality geospatial data,... Read More
  • October
    23

    OGC - We're Back!

    Microsoft has rejoined the Open Geospatial Consortium as a Principal Member! And, we're pretty excited about it too. Wayland, MA and San Antonio, TX, October 23, 2007 - Today, at the annual Geoint 2007 Symposium, the Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc. (OGC) announced that Microsoft Corporation has joined the consortium as a Principal Member. Government agencies worldwide are realizing the power of geospatial applications to meet their missions in ways that are unprecedented - from public safety applications to famine and hunger relief. According to David Schell, Chairman and CEO of OGC, "Microsoft's support of OGC's standards process signifies the further maturation of world markets for products and services which require geospatial capabilities. We believe that Microsoft's participation in the consortium is positioned to make a major contribution to furthering the adoption of geospatial interoperability in key industry and government sectors. This will strengthen OGC's role in shaping the policies and best practices needed to grow and support development of effective spatial data infrastucture worldwide. As dependency on geospatial information resources for dealing with such global... Read More Microsoft has rejoined the Open Geospatial Consortium as a Principal Member! And, we're pretty excited about it too. Wayland, MA and San Antonio, TX, October 23, 2007 - Today, at the annual Geoint 2007 Symposium, the Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc. (OGC) announced that Microsoft Corporation has joined the consortium as a Principal Member. Government agencies worldwide are realizing the power of geospatial applications to meet their missions in ways that are unprecedented - from public safety applications to famine and hunger relief. According to David Schell, Chairman and CEO of OGC, "Microsoft's support of OGC's standards process signifies the further maturation of world markets for products and services which require geospatial capabilities. We believe that Microsoft's participation in the consortium is positioned to make a major contribution to furthering the adoption of geospatial interoperability in key industry and government sectors. This will strengthen OGC's role in shaping the policies and best practices needed to grow and support development of effective spatial data infrastucture worldwide. As dependency on geospatial information resources for dealing with such global... Read More
  • October
    23

    Virtual Earth for SharePoint

    Rachna posted a great blog entry for his web part using Virtual Earth. I get this request all the time, so I'm glad the MOSS team stepped up. Check out his blog entry here . CP Rachna posted a great blog entry for his web part using Virtual Earth. I get this request all the time, so I'm glad the MOSS team stepped up. Check out his blog entry here . CP
  • October
    23

    Virtual Earth Certification

    Trika was nice enough to point out that the beta for the Virtual Earth Certification Exam is now available. I like how I helped author the exam, but I had to find out through her blog that it is available - love it. Anyway, here are some details about the certification that I plagurized from Trika's blog. "New Microsoft Exam! Be the first to certify on Virtual Earth 6.0 !" Feel free to share this with Virtual Earth-aware developers. You can register starting October 15, adn the beta is open until November 14 . If you don't know much about betas, read this or this first. Register for Beta Exam 71-544: TS: Microsoft® Virtual Earth™ 6.0, Developing By participating in beta exams, you have the opportunity to provide the Microsoft Certification program with feedback about exam content, which is integral to development of exams in their released version. We depend on the contributions of experienced IT professionals and developers as we continually improve exam content and maintain the value of Microsoft certifications. Please remember that participation in the beta process is completely voluntary and Microsoft makes no promises or guarantees regarding the beta exam process... Read More Trika was nice enough to point out that the beta for the Virtual Earth Certification Exam is now available. I like how I helped author the exam, but I had to find out through her blog that it is available - love it. Anyway, here are some details about the certification that I plagurized from Trika's blog. "New Microsoft Exam! Be the first to certify on Virtual Earth 6.0 !" Feel free to share this with Virtual Earth-aware developers. You can register starting October 15, adn the beta is open until November 14 . If you don't know much about betas, read this or this first. Register for Beta Exam 71-544: TS: Microsoft® Virtual Earth™ 6.0, Developing By participating in beta exams, you have the opportunity to provide the Microsoft Certification program with feedback about exam content, which is integral to development of exams in their released version. We depend on the contributions of experienced IT professionals and developers as we continually improve exam content and maintain the value of Microsoft certifications. Please remember that participation in the beta process is completely voluntary and Microsoft makes no promises or guarantees regarding the beta exam process... Read More
  • October
    17

    Virtual Earth Version 6 - Now Available

    The Virtual Earth version 6 API is now available. The launch included several new exciting features documented in the online SDK .Moving from Version 5 to Version 6 is easy! You simply need to change one character in your .ashx link - change http://dev.virtualearth.net/mapcontrol/mapcontrol.ashx?v=5 to http://dev.virtualearth.net/mapcontrol/mapcontrol.ashx?v=6 . I've received several messages from people who were linking to the .ashx file on local.live.com or have downloaded the .js file from the .ashx file - VERY BAD. If we wanted you to do this we'd put it in the SDK, so change your links; however, by now you've probably realized that your application is broken and are looking for a fix. We'll for now you can change your link to "http://dev.virtualearth.net/legacyservice/ " + servicetype + ",ashx" + parameter. As for the details of version 6, I've provided the overview below: Multipoint routing The new GetDirections API can take multiple points for a route instead of just the start and end points, allowing for more complex trip planning. In addition, it is also possible to import routes from Excel through the GeoRSS API. NOTE: The current GetRoute API continues to support start... Read More The Virtual Earth version 6 API is now available. The launch included several new exciting features documented in the online SDK .Moving from Version 5 to Version 6 is easy! You simply need to change one character in your .ashx link - change http://dev.virtualearth.net/mapcontrol/mapcontrol.ashx?v=5 to http://dev.virtualearth.net/mapcontrol/mapcontrol.ashx?v=6 . I've received several messages from people who were linking to the .ashx file on local.live.com or have downloaded the .js file from the .ashx file - VERY BAD. If we wanted you to do this we'd put it in the SDK, so change your links; however, by now you've probably realized that your application is broken and are looking for a fix. We'll for now you can change your link to "http://dev.virtualearth.net/legacyservice/ " + servicetype + ",ashx" + parameter. As for the details of version 6, I've provided the overview below: Multipoint routing The new GetDirections API can take multiple points for a route instead of just the start and end points, allowing for more complex trip planning. In addition, it is also possible to import routes from Excel through the GeoRSS API. NOTE: The current GetRoute API continues to support start... Read More
  • October
    15

    MapCruncher Beta for Virtual Earth

    It's official - MapCruncher is now a supported beta product by the Virtual Earth team! This is big. This means that MapCruncher has graduated out of Microsoft Research as a pet project with really cool implications to a fully supported application by our team. If you've never heard of MapCruncher I've copied/pasted the description below, but in a nutshell - if you want to overlay customize maps atop of Virtual Earth this tool will allow you to do that with a friendly user interface or programmable batch command line prompt. MapCruncher can rasterize parcel maps, community maps, bus routes, hiking trails - whatever you want so you get a robust user interface to navigate your information. Here's the official description: MapCruncher Beta for Microsoft Virtual Earth makes it easy to publish maps overlaid in an application using the Virtual Earth map control. Once you are familiar with the tool, it will take you about ten minutes to generate a new tile layer. Just find 5 to 10 corresponding landmarks on your map and on the Virtual Earth map view, and MapCruncher will register your map to the global coordinate system, warp it to fit a Mercator projection, and generate a set of image tiles... Read More It's official - MapCruncher is now a supported beta product by the Virtual Earth team! This is big. This means that MapCruncher has graduated out of Microsoft Research as a pet project with really cool implications to a fully supported application by our team. If you've never heard of MapCruncher I've copied/pasted the description below, but in a nutshell - if you want to overlay customize maps atop of Virtual Earth this tool will allow you to do that with a friendly user interface or programmable batch command line prompt. MapCruncher can rasterize parcel maps, community maps, bus routes, hiking trails - whatever you want so you get a robust user interface to navigate your information. Here's the official description: MapCruncher Beta for Microsoft Virtual Earth makes it easy to publish maps overlaid in an application using the Virtual Earth map control. Once you are familiar with the tool, it will take you about ten minutes to generate a new tile layer. Just find 5 to 10 corresponding landmarks on your map and on the Virtual Earth map view, and MapCruncher will register your map to the global coordinate system, warp it to fit a Mercator projection, and generate a set of image tiles... Read More
  • October
    15

    October Data and Imagery Drop

    Another huge drop of data for your liking (38.1 TB). Here are the details: Vector North America and Europe Refresh of all North American and European road information Oblique Imagery (Bird's Eye) United States Worcester, MD Orange, CT Select areas of Connecticut Warren, NJ Hunterdon, NJ Cape May, NJ Select areas of New Jersey Jackson, MS Tulsa, OK Reno, NV Marion, OR Fulton, NY Northampton, PA Albany Metro, NY Henrico, VA Yonkers Metro, NY Fresno, CA Harford, MD Larimer, CO Erie, NY United Kingdom Aldershot Newbury Ayre Warwick/Leamington Telford Mansfield Blackburn / Darwen Basingstoke / Basing Burnley / Nelson Cannock / Great Wyrley Craigavon Nuneaton Redditch / Astwood Abergele / Rhyl / Prestatyn Weymouth Spain Madrid Sweden Stockholm Denmark Copenhagen Ortho Imagery (GlobeXplorer) United States Imperial County, CA Fresno, CA Cincinnati/North Kentucky, OH/KY Kern County, CA Louisville, KY City of Merced, CA Blythe, CA Lexington, KY Willow Springs, AZ Wilmington, NC Placer County, CA St. George, UT Ft. Pierce/Stuart, FL North East, OH Pensacola, FL Catalina Island, CA Ft. Myers, FL Panama/Tallahassee, FL Florida Keys, FL Gainesville/Ocala, FL US 19, WV Satellite... Read More Another huge drop of data for your liking (38.1 TB). Here are the details: Vector North America and Europe Refresh of all North American and European road information Oblique Imagery (Bird's Eye) United States Worcester, MD Orange, CT Select areas of Connecticut Warren, NJ Hunterdon, NJ Cape May, NJ Select areas of New Jersey Jackson, MS Tulsa, OK Reno, NV Marion, OR Fulton, NY Northampton, PA Albany Metro, NY Henrico, VA Yonkers Metro, NY Fresno, CA Harford, MD Larimer, CO Erie, NY United Kingdom Aldershot Newbury Ayre Warwick/Leamington Telford Mansfield Blackburn / Darwen Basingstoke / Basing Burnley / Nelson Cannock / Great Wyrley Craigavon Nuneaton Redditch / Astwood Abergele / Rhyl / Prestatyn Weymouth Spain Madrid Sweden Stockholm Denmark Copenhagen Ortho Imagery (GlobeXplorer) United States Imperial County, CA Fresno, CA Cincinnati/North Kentucky, OH/KY Kern County, CA Louisville, KY City of Merced, CA Blythe, CA Lexington, KY Willow Springs, AZ Wilmington, NC Placer County, CA St. George, UT Ft. Pierce/Stuart, FL North East, OH Pensacola, FL Catalina Island, CA Ft. Myers, FL Panama/Tallahassee, FL Florida Keys, FL Gainesville/Ocala, FL US 19, WV Satellite... Read More
  • October
    02

    MSN Mexico, Motorola & Virtual...

    MSN Mexico (aka Prodigy MSN ) launched an application with Motorola using Virtual Earth as a backdrop for community data. The concept is an exclusive site for Motorola and MSN which focuses on entertainment. The site consists of podcasts, editorial music news, and product information. Of particular interest is the user's ability to generate a mini-web site (or Motospace) which consists of a photo, blog, music and customizable backgrounds. The Motospace must contain user location information within Mexico allowing the site to plot the user on a map based on city & state. Virtual Earth allows for a means to browse other user Motospaces and tour cities and user blogs in those cities. As a part of the program, users are allowed to vote for their favorite Motospace. The user with the most votes will be rewarded - can you guess with what? :) The site will be live until December 31, so get your Motospace created! CP MSN Mexico (aka Prodigy MSN ) launched an application with Motorola using Virtual Earth as a backdrop for community data. The concept is an exclusive site for Motorola and MSN which focuses on entertainment. The site consists of podcasts, editorial music news, and product information. Of particular interest is the user's ability to generate a mini-web site (or Motospace) which consists of a photo, blog, music and customizable backgrounds. The Motospace must contain user location information within Mexico allowing the site to plot the user on a map based on city & state. Virtual Earth allows for a means to browse other user Motospaces and tour cities and user blogs in those cities. As a part of the program, users are allowed to vote for their favorite Motospace. The user with the most votes will be rewarded - can you guess with what? :) The site will be live until December 31, so get your Motospace created! CP