Amazon's A9 Maps

Amazon has been busily working on their A9 Maps. For awhile they hired anyone who wanted to drive a van rigged with cameras and GPS around cities for hours and hours. The result? You can now see maps and storefronts of shops that online stores like Amazon is trying to put out of business. Ingenious.

There is the 'overview' map on the top right, which is very nice for showing me where I'm zoomed in on. You use the overview map to translate your zoomed view, and clicking in the zoom view creates a zooming bounding box. The overview map can be used for quickly changing your viewpoint and also the size of your zoomed viewpoint.

The overview map is a very nice feature in that it allows me to investigate an entire region without losing a sense of where I am within that region.

And now with the "out the side of the car" view, you can recreate my commute to work. Yay.

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About the Author

Andrew Turner is an advocate of open standards and open data. He is actively involved in many organizations developing and supporting open standards, including OpenStreetMap, Open Geospatial Consortium, Open Web Foundation, OSGeo, and the World Wide Web Consortium. He co-founded CrisisCommons, a community of volunteers that, in coordination with government agencies and disaster response groups, build technology tools to help people in need during and after a crisis such as an earthquake, tsunami, tornado, hurricane, flood, or wildfire.