Country the service is in may affect:
- Their default user language, though they may offer
- Quality of map. The detail they can offer on other
countries (usually less).
- Their legal attitude to link-able URLS, copyright
- Their data harvesting from your web accesses.
- Maps to
Commercial company. Some nice features, ie red circle,
But various annoying features too:
- Graphic symbols blot out street names, making
maps Less useful for city residents seeking detail,
& more useful for tourists.
- [Used to be]Short expiring (2 days) URLs, as they
now invite you to copy to web site I guess they last
longer, & might then eventually expire into a
redirector catch page ?
- Restrictive legal conditions re. links (that too
might have changed, or not, Caveat emptor);
- Their free link setter doesn't work if a browser
doesn't support Java script (eg Dello &
- If you are brave/ foolish enough to enable
scripts, at 2010_08_13 Konqueror browser locked up
the entire X-Windows graphics session reporting a
script was consuming resources, (offering to abort
it, but failing to) (the underlying FreeBSD/Unix
outside of X-Windows was still healthy, so a kill of
Konqueror process resumed X to normal).
- Further crippled, cos now if you print the page,
you get all their adverts, but no map. (Unix
X-Windows people might try xwd, if/ where legal, I
- Good detail in maps, though people perhaps
won't report odd errors they see, as so
||Free & Public & Editable Under ground
rail (U.Bahn) station names in blue, routes in dotted
black. Tram (strassen-bahn) tracks in solid black.
enabled, & tells you if not enabled.
Free service for now, but a commercial company, what if
one day they might abuse a monopoly ?
just leaves you in search engine.
(Not linked as penalty for requiring
|Needs Flash -
OK for clueless Microsoft users, but a problem for some
Free Software users who want to escape the Redmond
monopolist convicted by the EU ! (until if ever
Macromedia issues source or licences to all op
(Not linked as penalty for requiring
|"Fast, has a street finder"
Seems to be 100%
flash, which makes it pretty much useless for non-WinDoze
||for planning walks:
||OK, decent map. Can hang w. mozilla
|World Wide inc. Britain
||Allows detailed URLS for later
London Example Haven't tested to see how long such
|Britain & Austria etc
||OK, Shows a numeric street address in Vienna. Not as
good as stadtplandienst.de for numeric street address in
Forwards to bing.com running in German (Language
stupidly wrongly deduced from my browswer's IP, ignoring
my browsers explicitly set HTTP_ACCEPT_LANGUAGE="en,de;q=0.8,fr;q=0.5,it;q=0.3"
|Britain, London, Tube
Tube by BBC
||Old map to print, bordered by tons of Ads
||Small maps NOT general map server, just tourist
|Britain, London, 1859
||150 Years Old
||No detailed map, more useful to tourists deciding
where to visit.
"Driving Directions" + a
2010 promo for OpenStreetMap
||Rec. < Gary J.
|You can link URL without problems:
Example Listed last as the owner is
monopolist Microsoft, fined in top European court 2004
for monopoly offences I believe, & fine upheld on
appeal . Do your bit to break their attempts to
increase their monopoly. Don't buy from them. Use free
In alphabetic order - Till I think of a more meaningful
Info. I've been told; Not tried myself yet.
This below is new, speculative, incomplete etc.
Some ideas may not be quite right, some ideas not
explored sufficiently yet. Corrections
When you use a map service, or any internet service,
or just read a plain page such as this, you might get
more than just adverts: you potentially expose yourself
& your data. Accessing any web page, even without
Java, cookies, or any other tricks, tells a web page
owner your are active, & so if they're feeling
intrusive, malicious, inquisitive, they could run a
`security scan' on you, without you knowing it, if only
to see how well your firewall stops them. Yes, I could
have done that too. No, _I_ didn't, but some people
& companies could. Not all humans are nice.
What could "They" do with data they harvest from us
If you think "They" can't get anything from you, think
If you're using Microsoft's OS & Browser
You're presumably at greater risk when you visit
Microsoft controlled sites: They don't publish
their source code for public scrutiny, so
independent experts can't check what the
interaction is, what information may flow.
- Article "Windows 98 Knows Who You Are By
David Methvin, Richard Smith September 6, 1999"
published by Byte
Truncated version here , full
version here )
Smith, President of Phar Lap Software
found interesting info hidden in Microsoft
format docs. (I recall the complete edit record
- so recipients could find previous different
prices in earlier draft commercial offers etc!
) A web search shows other secrets too. Why
trust a monopolist ? ( I heard Microsoft fixed
their Word after being exposed, I don't know, I
don't use their viral (*) products or formats
("viral"*: ie susceptible to viruses, &
also as a proprietary monopolist format: a
viral attack in the wider sense of the word, to
try to marginalise non MS users &
discourage use of free
- Remember if you'r on a LAN, or using DSL with an
ethernet card, the ethernet has a unique MAC address,
which was also perhaps on the outside of the box,
when the bar code reader swiped it for `stock control
purposes' while you paid by credit card - with
address implicit. - Who knows how far That info gets
aggregated across multiple sales over time, to
analyse purchase trends etc, & who might purchase
such info, or companies having the info.
- Remember the identification naming info XP
requires you type in when you install it ? & Your
licence ID number ?
- Consider the environment
& language preferences etc information your
browser gives any web server.
- All net computer have an IP number, that can
usually be reversed to a network domain name. The IP
number can also be checked against IP number maps for
probable provider name.
- Traceroute can be used to see physically where
you're routing through.
- Long URLs can contain disguised & compressed
street names, useful for tracking repeat requests
from different clients. Map providers could take your
initial address, then focus on your repeated zoom
clicks plus those of others, (on a statistically
averaged basis to avoid jitter), then use that to
confirm & enhance their street name database.
"Fine, produces better maps." you may think. I agree.
A shame though if something like that gave a
Monopolist any further advantage to leverage their