At times like these, I know that I’m a geek! Today the Google Code Blog just announced that they are now supporting KML files.
“Doug, calm down”, you say!
I can’t! I’m freakin’ out! Where you used to have to programmatically plot points on a map, you can now simply ‘point’ to a KML file and Google Maps will automatically plot it on their map.
“Yea, sure”, you say!
Here’s an example of a KML file:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> <kml xmlns="http://earth.google.com/kml/2.1"> <Document> <Placemark> <name>Doug</name> <description>Did you know they just opened Au Bon Pain right here?</description> <Style> <IconStyle> <Icon> <href>https://martech.zone/wp-content/uploads/2006/06/me2.thumbnail.jpg</href> </Icon> </IconStyle> </Style> <Point> <coordinates>-86.158160,39.767480,0</coordinates> </Point> </Placemark> </Document> </kml>
Using Google Maps, I simply point the map to query my KML file:
“Wow”, you finally say! (I hope!)
Here’s what it looks like:
Seriously folks. Where XML is the universal data exchange format, KML (which is XML) is the universal geographic data exchange format. This is a great step forward. Using other GIS programs, people can output KML files and then simply open them online with Google Maps.