Improvements to Google Mapping Site

This past weekend, I made several improvements to my site that allows you to map multiple locations on Google Maps. These improvements were mostly suggested by users of the site, and there were a couple that I came up with after seeing the usage patterns of the site, and trying to improve performance.

Read on to see the listing of new/improved features:


  • Added annotations to locations You can now include text at the end of each address line that is surrounded in curly-braces ({ and }), and that text will be displayed in the address bubble, and also in the listing below the map. For example, you could enter:

    123 Sesame St. New York, NY {Big Bird lives here}

  • Saved maps You can give your map a nick name, and you will be able to link to it at I noticed that a lot of people are using the service and linking to it from their page. THis will make it easier to link so you don’t have a ridiculously long url.

  • Cached Geocoding Results The service works by asking Google for the latitude and longitude of each address in the request. These coordinates are then used to plot the map. Before this update, we were asking Google for each address, every time. Now, we store the results the first time an address is mapped, and we will never ask Google for that address again.

  • Throttled Geocode Requests Google has restrictions on the number of addresses you can lookup at a time. This caused problems if you wanted to plot large numbers of addresses on this service. Some of the address would come back as unknown. Now, the service will pause briefly if it is looking up a large number of addresses that it doesn’t have stored in the cache. So, if you want to plot 100 addresses, it should work fine. You will notice that the first time, it may take a while for the map to show up. However, if you save the map, it will load quickly next time, since the addresses will be stored in the cache, and we don’t have to ask Google for them.

  • Category on this blog I have created a category on this blog for I will post announcements all updates on this site, so you can check back there, or subscribe to the RSS feed to be kept up to date.

So, I hope you find these improvements useful, and take a look at Please let me know what you think in the comments, or via email at

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