Using GMaps

Locating my worlds.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Shadow of Diamond Head

Here's a pretty picture of western Diamond Head.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

A Map: Find A Beanery

I'm building a Beanery Locator Map of The Allann Bros Coffee Houses of the Willamette Valley in Oregon. I'm using the YourGmap 2-column format which is accessed from their server.

The Beanery boasts that they have been Oregon's Coffeehouse since 1972. It is great fun to drive north into population-land slowly slipping on your big city hat while sipping from the Beanery's along the way. Look for them in Ashland, Eugene, Corvallis, Albany, and Salem

I will be adding locations and some descriptions over the next day or so.

Avoid Clipping Your Map

While trying unsuccessfully to recreate a map that had clipped buttons, I realised what probably happened. It was early in my learning curve and I was pasting html, publishing to the blog and trying to figure a good map width fit for the blog. I think I must have widened the map without pasting the new html - which, of course would clip the new map since the blog held the old width definition. So, if you see this check your pastings.

Result of map width = 450 pixels & expected width = 400 pixels!!

Monday, January 02, 2006

Your GMap - A GMap Tool Review

Tool Name: Your Gmap
Function: You can create a GMap with locations and descriptions accessed with a wide assortment of markers. Your completed map is hosted by YourGMap and can be accessed from your webpage in 2 ways. They provide you a bit of html that will either place a link to your map on their site or embed the map directly on your webpage. In both cases your map is hosted by YourGMap so your latest and greatest map is always the one your visitors will see.

Rating: 5 DiggerNuts
On a 5 point scale with range from 5=Best to 1=Not My Nut
This is a Great Tool !

What Did I Do?
I created a map of the locations of family homes of my mother's ancestors in the area of Eugene, Oregon. I started the project last night and within a short time I had a useable map. The interface is very easy and satisfying to use.

I had a bigger goal of really understanding what I was doing with this new tool so that I can leave tracks for others during their own explorations. You can read my previous posts for a glimpse of me slogging through the bog for this new blog'o'mine.

Here is the finished product.

Tips, Issues & Limitations

TIP: Fitting The Map into Default Blogger Screen

I use Blogger as my blog host, and I am new to this enterprise, as well. So, I am interested in fitting the map into their default screen. My box is a 15" 3 year old Compaq Presario Laptop and I run it with a display of 1400 x 1050 pixels.

Page Width = 400 pixels

  • The map will not extend into region allotted for frames on the right. This allows the frame to be aligned to the top of your page.

Page Height = mine is set to 500 pixels


If you want to experiment with widths, remember to cut and paste the html provided by YourGMap into you webpage for each change. It contains the expected map dimensions. If the map is wider than the webpage expects, then it will be clipped on the right side. See the Post: Avoid Clipping Your Map to see a clipped map.

Using 2 - Column Format

In this mode you create your map as usual, but you don't control the width or height. The bit of html provided gives you the address of your map at YourGMap. Place the link on your webpage. Visitors click and are redirected to your map. Here is a link to a 2-column map of the Beanery Coffee Houses in the Willamette Valley in Oregon.

My Wish List

  1. It would be great to be able to make a copy of a map that I've made so that I can modify it under another name, or make it available as both an embedded map and a linked map. I really like the 2 column format so that all the map info is available to scan at a glance.
  2. Width and height control is not available for 2-column maps. It would be nice to have control of the height so that the initial view of the map can be more closely adjusted to the distance between the top and bottom locations. See the Beanery Map as an example.

The Folks At Your GMap

While I was struggling with building my own understanding of how all these tools work together, Gabor Cselle was very helpful with explanations and made changes to better lead the user. These are top notch folks! There is a User Forum that you can post questions on if you are registered.