There’s more to Google Maps than a place you double-check your directions. Google’s data-stuffed site offers a lot of helpful tools for vacationers, spreadsheet nerds, bikers and others. Today we’re digging into Google’s data-rich geo-tool and pulling out some helpful lesser-known features.
Photo by heiwa4126.
10. Use Starred Addresses Instead of Your Memory
9. Show a “You Are Here” Marker
8. Create Multi-Day Walking Itineraries
7. Fine-Tune or Report A Bad Location
6. Map Out a Great Bike Route
Google Maps’ biking directions do more than just estimate how long it would take a very slow car to get from one point to another. Google takes traffic into account, sure, but also hills, routes that an area or cycling group has deemed as bike-friendly, designated bike lanes, and other cycle-specific data into account. Bicycle routes that normally wouldn’t be shown in seeking car directions also appear on the map, in a green colour that stands out, and the tool as a whole is a cyclist’s best friend in visiting a new area, or looking to vary up their excursions. Australia, please?
5. Provide Instant Lat/Long (GPS) Coordinates
4. Show Photos Taken Nearby
3. Zoom To Exactly What You Need
2. Find Places Near Any Point on a Map
1. Map Spreadsheet Addresses Onto a Map
Spreadsheets are the best way to gather and organise information in standard form. If you’ve got a whole host of options to keep track of in different locations, the clever Maps/spreadsheet mashup BatchGeo will take your spreadsheet and plot it out across a Google Map. Simply paste your spreadsheet data, and BatchGeo standardises the addresses and creates a custom My Map, filled with your locations and each one retaining the other data you plugged in about it. It’s a fast way to make it look like you did a whole bunch of work, and that’s never a bad thing. And while it’s not technically a Google Maps feature, we think it should be. (Original post)[imgclear]
What cool little thing in Google Maps doesn’t get enough love? What hidden-in-plain-sight offerings would you have included in this list? We want to hear about your favourite geo-tools in the comments.