Embed Google Streetview

December 11th, 2007

Today I read about new cities where Google Streetview is available. At the bottom of this article, there is something about a new feature:

According to Boston.com, “Google is also introducing a mashup service today that will enable Internet users to import Street View panoramas from particular streets or neighborhoods to their own websites or blogs. The service is intended to make it easier for people to use Street View to recommend sights, locate coffee shops, or design cyber-walking tours.” More likely, Google will just extend the embedding feature to Street View imagery.

I couldn’t find more information about this new feature, so I decided to test it…..and it works. Just use the normal link to this page option when viewing the streetview. Past the HTML into your own page (or click on customize to change some settings for the embedded map) and here’s the result:

View Larger Map

This is a very nice new feature, I can think of all kinds of uses for this, eg you can display the area of your hotel, apartment, company, create a preview of your next holiday, etc.

update: feature has been officially launched on the Lat Long Blog

Google AJAX API loader

August 18th, 2007

Today I was going to the Google Maps API documentation and after using it for a while, my eye was caught by this:

Screenshot Google Maps Ajax API Loader Announcement

It’s maybe a bit difficult to read from the above image, but it says:

The Google Maps API is now integrated with the Google AJAX API loader…

I couldn’t remember seeing this before, so besides clicking on the link, I googled “Google AJAX API loader”. I found out it’s a very new way of using multiple Google javascript APIs on the same page.

The main purpose for the loader is to unify namespaces across the different APIs on one page and to have only one script tag instead of separate script tags for each of the APIs you wanna use on your page.
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Migrated to WordPress

July 28th, 2007

As of today this blog doesn’t run on my home-made-blogging software anymore. Instead it uses WordPress.

When I started this blog, I thought it would be a nice experience to build my own blogging system. And it was, but….after I build the basic blogging system, I wanted to add more features, eg. comments, pingbacks, etc. After a while I realized I didn’t had time (or didn’t make time) to add these features, so I started looking for another solution.

I heard and saw a lot of good things about WordPress, but it uses PHP, a language I never really looked into. But I was getting more and more enthusiastic about WordPress, so I decided to make the switch.

Last few days I created my own WordPress theme, so I could use my existing layout. I moved all the data from my old blog, setup mod_rewrite for the old urls and here’s the result. I still have to migrate my Dutch Blog, but that’ll happen somewhere next week.

If you run into dead links or if you’re experiencing any problems on this blog, please let me now. You can use the comments for this, they are working!!!! If you’d like to comment on any of the older articles, please do so.

Laptop crash

July 11th, 2007

Last week my laptop crashed. For a long time several programs were crashing randomly. I didn’t had time to investigate this, but it was becoming a very big problem lately. Firefox was crashing about every 5 minutes. Last week I couldn’t even start Mongrel or Tomcat.

A disk check revealed a lot of problems on file system level. I started to backup everything I could, but some parts were already too much corrupted.

I was afraid it was a hardware problem, but after doing a clean Debian Lenny install everything looks okay. Even my random crashes are gone!

But I’m not completely convinced the problems will be gone away for good, so I’m starting to look for another laptop anyway.

And now I must make a difficult decision: Will my next laptop be Linux based or MacOSX based?

Google is giving away money…

June 29th, 2007

To Gadget developers that is. A few days ago Google announced Google Gadget Ventures, a pilot project for funding third-party Gadget developers.

The Official Google Blog says Google wants to help developers who want to spend more time developing Gadgets and:

Our hope with Google Gadget Ventures is to help create an ecosystem where developers can spend more time doing what they love—building great Gadgets.

It’s very nice of Google to think about us pour developers, but I don’t think this is the main reason.

Google knows how important the developer community is. Without developers who want to create Gadgets, iGoogle won’t be very popular and people will go to Yahoo, Netvibes or one of the other personalized pages services. I even think there are more Netvibes modules at the moment than there are Google Gadgets. So it’s a very smart move to start awarding developers.

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Recent Google developments

June 8th, 2007

Just when I didn’t had time to blog, Google decided to announce a series of new developments and features.

It started with the O’Reilly Where 2.0 conference, where Google announced the Google Street View and Mapplets.

The day after Where 2.0, Google had organized a Developer day in 10 cities around the world, where a lot of developer related stuff was launched.

In this post I’m highlighting some of the new stuff I find interesting, like new Google Maps API features, Mapplets and the Mashup Editor.

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How to get your information into Google Maps (7): Coupons

May 18th, 2007

Besides the ways to add information into Google Maps I wrote about in this series, the businesses in the US have one extra option. They can add Coupons to their Maps listing. In this article you can read more about what Coupons are and how they can be created.

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How to get your information into Google Maps (6): User generated data

May 10th, 2007

If you want to publish information into Google Maps that isn’t a business location, you cannot use the Local Business Center, or the local ads option. You could use local AdWords ads, but that won’t display your information on the map.

Another way of adding information into Google Maps is by creating your own data sources. There are a few different ways of doing this and this article shows you how.

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How to get your information into Google Maps (5): Local Ads

May 3rd, 2007

After using the information of the previous article about the Local Business Center, you discovered when searching on Google Maps you’re just one of the several hundred companies in the search results. You start wondering how this can be changed, how can you make sure people will notice your company. That’s where the local business ads feature becomes useful.

First a note. I wanted to test the Local ads before writing about it. Unfortunately I don’t have a campaign suitable for local ads at the moment. All information found in this article is from research I’ve done. When I do have a local campaign running, I’ll probably write a follow up.

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How to get your information into Google Maps: Update

April 28th, 2007

For those of you who are waiting for the next installment in the How to get your information into Google Maps series, here’s a quick update.

Writing the last two articles about Local Ads and User Generated Content is taking longer than I thought it would take. Especially the one about Local Ads.

The local features of Adwords are difficult to test just for the sake of an article, without running a real campaign.

So keep your eyes posted on this blog, next week the last 2 articles will be published.

In the mean time, if you’re Dutch, you may wanna check out the Dutch version of this series. It’s not just a translated version, but it will also be adapted to the Dutch Google Maps (if possible and needed).