Virtual Tourism

Virtual tourism, google maps mashup, google video

USA States Etymology Map

Here's a little Google Map I created to show the meaning of the names given to each of the states in the USA. The origins of the names of U.S. states have been taken from this Wikipedia entry.

As fun as it is to read the meaning behind the names for the U.S. states the map is really a demo to show how you can use the new Styled Map option in the Google Maps API to remove the name labels from Google Maps.

Removing the labels with Styled Maps is easy enough. It is just a matter of turning off the visibility of options in the administrative layer. However once I'd removed the names from Google Maps I then had to figure out how to add my own labels. Luckily Marc Ridey has written an excellent Label class for Google Maps V3.

If you have a look at the example I've created you can see my design isn't very pretty. The next stage is to play with the font weight and font size to create something a little easier on the eye.

Global Vipassana Pagoda

The Global Vipassana Pagoda is a notable monument in Mumbai, India. It is located in the north of Mumbai in an area called Gorai and is built on donated land on a peninsula between Gorai creek and the Arabian Sea.

The shape of the pagoda is a copy of the Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon, Myanmar. The center of the Global Vipassana Pagoda contains the world's largest stone dome built without any supporting pillars. The height of the dome is approximately 29 metres, while the height of the building is 96.12 meters.

View a video of the Global Vipassana Pagoda on Google Maps

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Street View Drives

Google Sightseeing has an interesting post today on the abandoned town of Craco in southern Italy.

Craco shows up rather well in Google Maps Street View, so I decided to create another little Street View animation of a drive past of the town.

You can view the animation by visiting Street View Drives. Just click on the thumbnail image to view the drive.