Tuesday, May 11, 2021

An Introduction to Flash Maps for Interactive Mapping

Most of us have seen or used a Flash-based map on a website that allowed us to drill down by clicking on the map, with each “level” providing us with additional information. The term “flashmaps” is the term used to describe such a mapping application, and various companies provide developers with tools to create such flashmaps.

In this article, we’re going to look at free flashmap Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) from Yahoo, Google and MapQuest.

Google Maps API for Flash

Google Earth

When you work with the Google Maps API, you actually have access to a whole family of APIs that includes:

MapQuest Flash Maps API Using AS3/Flex

The MapQuest Flash Maps API offers functionality that is very similar to the Google Maps API, including:

  • mapping
  • geocoding
  • reverse geocoding
  • routing
  • searching

MapQuest

The MapQuest Flash Maps API can be downloaded as a zip file, and also requires the use of an Application Key. It includes detailed documentation as well as a discussion forum for developers.

Yahoo! Maps AS3 Component

Yahoo! Maps

Conclusion

As you can see, there are plenty of options for working with flashmaps if you are interested in working with open source APIs. Many websites, including FoxNews, eBay, Adobe, Sprint and Verizon, have chosen to use the flashmaps provided by FlashMaps.com. They provide various tools and packages to fit each developer’s own particular circumstances. In our next installment, we will look at FlashMaps.com and the extensive and flexible options they provide developers for Flash mapping applications.

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