Maps.com is launching Bing Maps Platform in their education portal as the backdrop for exploring their massive repository of map-based information. The new site Maps 101 launches today! For the initial launch, subscribers (there’s also a free trial) can use the dynamic map to find Maps101 content – including National Geographic videos, Maps, Lesson plans and Educational games and activities – for a specific geographic location. Users of the online K-12 resource will be able to explore streets, neighborhoods, cities and countries, search for relevant content and share their experiences as part of a host of exciting new Maps101 features developed with Bing.
Once you login, you’ll see the Bing Maps Silverlight Control load up full screen. As you navigate the map, you’ll see the Places box populating with locations within the bounding box of the map. You can select a respective location within the box to get article results. Additionally, you can single-click somewhere on the map to specify a location. The pushpin call out will have a number of map images within it. You can select one of the map images to pull out the respective article; or, you can select “See all results” to pull the full list of articles tied to the area.
This web application has great implications for education. Kids love the visualization maps provide and indexing pertinent information respective to their interests maps research fun. Plus, this is a great example of spatial context adding an additional dimension for search indexing. Map-based document search has use in the work place, too. For example, using Microsoft FAST Search with Bing Maps has been a great combination for many of my enterprise customers.
CP – Follow me on Twitter @ChrisPendleton