Google

Google Geonews: Numerous New 45° and 3D Cities, New Map Maker UI, Google Launches Schemer, and much more

Here's the recent Google-related geonews.

From official sources:

From other sources:

Batch Geonews: Tracking Santa Claus, MapInfo Stratus, Seamless USGS Topo Maps, Wikileaks Spyfiles Map, and much more

A lot of interesting geonews in this 'batch mode' edition.

On the Google front:

On the Esri front:

In the miscellaneous category:

In the maps category:

And as a bonus for reading this, see this wonderful time-lapse movie from the International Space Station around the world in 90 minutes

Google Geonews: Map API Limits Details, StreetView in Belgium and Ski Slopes, Fusion Tables, and much more

Here's the recent Google geonews.

From official sources:

From other sources:

Open Alternatives to Google Maps

Lately there was a not much surprising news about Google products and services. Among other things Google has changed the Google Maps API use policy and will charge to those users that exceed some download limits.

It is well known that Google Maps is one of the most (or the most) famous mapping service used around the net and it starts the web GIS revolution some years ago but hopefully it is not the only API we can use. Bing and the discontinued Yahoo Maps, are great competitors but there are great and open alternatives to use.

I wrote this post to summarize the most important JavaScript API alternatives to Google Maps.

[Editor's note: this anonymous submission mainly discusses OpenLayers, Polymaps and Leaflet]

Patent Mess for Location-Based Reminders from Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and Google

Two days ago (yes, I was busy) Slashdot discussed a story named Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, and Google Chase 'Got Milk?' Patents.

Their summary: "Among the new iOS 5 features is Reminders, which Apple explains this way: 'Say you need to remember to pick up milk during your next grocery trip. Since Reminders can be location based, you'll get an alert as soon as you pull into the supermarket parking lot.' But does Reminders infringe on a newly-granted patent to Amazon for Location Aware Reminders, which covers the use of location based reminders to remind a user 'to purchase certain items such as, for example, as milk, bread, and eggs'? Or could Reminders run afoul of Google's new patent for Geocoding Personal Information, which covers triggering a voice reminder or making a computing device vibrate when a user approaches a location if 'one of the user's events is a task to pick up milk and bread'? Not to be left out of the 'Got Milk?' patent race, Apple also has a patent pending for Computer Systems and Methods for Collecting, Associating, and/or Retrieving Data, which covers providing a reminder to a user whose 'to do' list includes 'get milk' when the user's location matches 'a store that sells the item "milk."'

That should not be confused with Microsoft's pending patent for Geographic Reminders, which allows users to specify reminders such as 'pick up milk if I am within a ten minutes drive of any grocery store.' That all four tech giants chose to pursue remember-the-milk patents — and the USPTO is considering and granting them — is all the more remarkable considering that Microsoft suggested location-based reminders were obvious in a 2005 patent filing, which informed the USPTO that 'a conventional reminder application may give the user relevant information at a given location, such as 'You're near a grocery store, and you need milk at home.' So much for that immediate patent quality improvement promised by the America Invents Act!"

​You bet the patent system needs to be overhauled!

Google Geonews: Maps API Drawing Library, Opting out of Google Location Server, Fluid Nebula, and much more

Here's the recent Google-related geonews.

From official sources:

From other sources:

Batch Geonews: Bing Maps Updates, Nokia's Yahoo Maps, U.S. Geoplatform Launches, GIS and the Cloud, and much more

Here's the latest geonews in batch mode. But first, as a media partner of the Geomatique 2011 event, if you participated to the conference, we invite you to fill this survey and get a chance to win an iPad 2.

On the Google front:

On the Microsoft front:

On the Esri front:

On the open source front that wasn't mentioned yesterday:

In the miscellaneous category:

In the maps category:

Google Geonews: New Street View in Parks and Inside Businesses, SketchUp Showcase, and more

Here's the recent Google-related geonews. Nothing major this time to be honest.

From the official sources:

From other sources:

Batch Geonews: ArcGIS for Android 1.0 Released, GeoIQ Social, Business Interiors in StreetView, Income Inequality, and more

First, I'm sorry for not publishing the "batch mode" version of the geonews for the last two weeks - along with several other responsibilities, taking care of two young daughters at home is certainly fun, but engulfs all available time. In this batch mode edition, there are certainly a few geonews that could deserve their own entry - click on what interests you to learn more!

From the Google front:

From the Esri front:

From the miscellaneous category:

In the maps category:

Google To Enforce Usage Limits for the Google Maps API and Google Map Maker Comes to Canada

An important Google announcement that will impact all major users of the Google Maps API is the Introduction of usage limits to the Maps API

The HEO blog summarizes it this way: "Beyond the free limit of 25,000 views per day, sites will start having to pay $4 per 1,000 views." The details are actually in the Google Maps API FAQ. This 25,000 limit will impact only heavy traffic websites, which may be interested in the more cost-effective Maps API Premier license. But still that's the end of the free Google Maps API. Enforcement will begin in early 2012.

In the Google announcement: "We understand that the introduction of these limits may be concerning. However with the continued growth in adoption of the Maps API we need to secure its long term future by ensuring that even when used by the highest volume for-profit sites, the service remains viable. By introducing these limits we are ensuring that Google can continue to offer the Maps API for free to the vast majority of developers for many years to come."

The second announcement is Google Map Maker now available for Canada. And as a bonus (and less important), here's the official entry for this week's imagery update to Google Maps and Google Earth.

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