Google Maps Interface Changed... Again.

Well, between yesterday and today, GoogleMaps has changed their interface. This has broken my Travelogue as well as the post map in the right-sidebar of my site.

As evidenced by Flickr and other sites, providing developers and enthusiasts a public interface to your tools is both great for ideas, development, and advertising. I used GoogleMaps more because I can fool around with it in my own stuff, for much the same reason I started using Flickr over Snapfish or the other photo sharing sites.

But with Google sticking to the "Beta" moniker, they allow a gateway for themselves to change the API, and other functionality willy-nilly with no warning, or support for prior versions. Obviously they are actively developing and updating (the map-satellite icons are different on the page) but it reminds me that Google is a company who is interested first, and foremost, in the company and it's money. Of course, being publicly traded, this is reinforced now by stockholder's interests.

Google is doing a similar thing by attempting to restrict GreaseMonkey scripts from operating in Gmail.

This reminds me of the great article about how another fruit company that has a beloved community has moved from "we company" to a "they company".

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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.