Google Geo Day 1

Google Geo Day, part 1

Today the google geoday is held in Amsterdam Expo XXI

The morning programme consisted of three speeches, most about google maps and google earth, focused towards developers who want to create mashups based on the maps API.

A bunch of quick notes, some in Dutch (with the Dutch speakers mostly)

Dagvoorzitter: Sidney Mock Marketing Manager Benelux at Google

Intro Google Maps

Bernhard Seefeld Tech Lead Manager at Google (blog)

Geschiedenis, oude kaarten met Amsterdam als centrum van de industrie

Nieuw: eigen bedrijfsgegevens toevoegen aan locatie (gratis exposure voor local business, gratis meta data voor Google)

Local ads, adwords voor Maps.

Nieuwe mogelijkheid: gebruik Google Maps om een selectie te maken, voeg punten toe, exporteer als MKL. Dan is er een nieuwe API om met wat Javascript een Maps web-applicatie te maken (aka “mashup”).

Ook mogelijk: een KML sitemap maken en linken.

Q&A session

when will the beta be over?

– when we are finished

Will the Maps API stay free / ad-free?

– we have a 90 day notice period as per license

– “we will not disappoint our 30k users”

Will there be a 4th dimension?

– there is already some time overlay (lost the details)

Routing info in the API?

– not yet, but it should be there

Do you have a roadmap?

– yes

How do you cope with conflicting opinions on the same geo spot?

– well…. give access to all opinions, people will add/modify the opinions until they converge. In other words: people will contribute and make corrections.


Brandon Badger, product manager

Google Maps as a blank canvas, the users  (“YOU”) will need to fill the space. Anything that is interesting in a geographic perspective.

Reasons to use the Maps API

– KML can link to each other, enhanced data, overlays

– Consistent user interface

– Details are taken care of (scrolling, zooming level, level of detail)

History (housing maps, the guy now works for Google)

Then Google “saw the light” and published official API’s.

Maps is free, “does not foresee taking away the API or forcing ads” (blah blah …). There is an enterprise license as well.

License agreement for free version: publicly available interface, no logo moddinge etc


– no page view limit

– 50k geocode API requests limit per day

– no ads pushed onto Maps API sites


– internal appl.

– CRM, workforce management, operations and logistics, marketing, external websites

– pay for access site

– bonus: enhanced support

User support: Google group Maps API

Open Source product: GMaps Utility Library

KML 2.1

Choice between KML and Maps API

– KML for Google Earth

– API for open web

Now these have been integrated: KML and GeoRSS are added in the Maps API.

var geoXml  = new GGeoXML(”http://url/of/KML.xml”);

KML 2.1 can have http links embedded, pointing to updated versions of the KML. Refresh interval (possibly a few seconds).

KML sitemap: all geo related subjects (pages) can be tagged for a google web crawler.

– geo annotated photo sets in Picasa

– make your own marker icons

– image overlays

– hierarchical structures; folders

– regions: fine tune how data will be presented for each zooming level.

– expiration date/time

– “radio button” behavior between layers

Q&A session

What is the import speed of placemarkers?

– high performance, limited to viewport only.

– performance is so good that sites are switching to KML instead of Javascript

What are resolution limits, will satellite imagery be improved?

– we are always looking for updated/improved data


– KML proposed as open standard within the ODC(?)

What’s the catch, what’s the business model?

– none, make money on advertising.

How can you take distrust about sharing my data away?

– hopefully it is a win-win: the more open data sharing company will eventually succeed through darwinistic/market economic principles. It’s all about end-user advantages and choice.

– choice in license forms: free or commercial

How to become a data partner?

– featured content section on Google Earth; you can send suggestions

– submit your KML sitemap to the crawler, then people will find it

Is there a reseller possibility for Google Earth? Sell the app for $400?

– no

What are the possibilities to protect my Enterprise Maps data?

– the raw input for the KML is not exposed

– you only expose the visual markers.

Related blog post: Geospatialsemanticweb: Google Maps supports GeoRSS

Nederlandse Mashups

Remco Kouwenhoven

– Website: overzicht van NL mashpus:

– gemeenteraad Groningen

– Consultant

Genereerde veel publiciteit rond discussie hoge resolutie Maps in NL.

Eerste NL mashup met veel exposure:

Verkozen tot mooiste mashup: Groene Kaart Kromme Rijn

Voorbeelden NL mashups:

– promotie Texel

– geluidskaart nederland, realtime vliegbewegingen: (google maps) en binnen Google Earth

– het dak van Rotterdam, veel 3D gebouwen (in ontwikkeling)

– (quasi live data, geinterpoleerd en storingen verwerkt)

– bestemmingsplannen in Den Haag (test met gekleurde gebieden) i.s.m. CROtec


– veel meer…

De toekomst

Stand van zaken in NL nog heel pril, meer technische gimmicks dan mooi uitgewerkte integratie in een site.

Toepassing als marketing instrument heel veel belovend.

Creativiteit: dingen zonder locatie hebben soms wel een locatie gebonden event bijvoorbeeld (gesponsorde hardloop etc).

Interactie tussen planontwikkelaars en betrokkenen: bestemmingsplan, maquettes.