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Mapping, weather, and phone directories

 

Most of these online mapping programs will really provide you two services. First, they will calculate a route for you to drive. Type in your starting point, and your destination, and the website will calculate the best route. Some will allow you to customize the results - by adding intermittent stops, by telling the computer to exclude all toll roads and/or freeways. In a moment or two you will have a suggested route, with highway numbers, total miles, and estimated driving time.

The second type of map is the detailed city map. Usually you will be able to zoom in to see a smaller portion of the city, with far more detail, right down to neighborhood streets. Keep in mind that you are online, and each time you zoom in or out; or move north or south, east or west, the map needs to redraw. If you have ever used a mapping program on CD-ROM, doing the same online will seem painfully slow!  My advice, buy the CD-ROM and use your time on the Internet more wisely! Here’s a list of the sites, take a look and see if you don’t agree.

Free trip. Type in your starting point, your destination, type of highways you like (avoid toll roads, for example) and types of attractions you would like to see, and this free route planner will calculate your route, with highway numbers, miles, and estimated time for the trip.
http://www.freetrip.com/

Maps of United States National Parks and Monuments. The Perry-Castaņeda Library Map Collection. The University of Texas at Austin. These maps are great!
Click here.

Yahoo Maps. Type in two addresses, get a map and trip plan with mileage.
http://maps.yahoo.com/py/maps.py

Mapquest.  Enter from and to addresses, get a map and directions.
http://www.mapquest.com/beta

White Pages.com and
Yellow Pages.com
Excellent resource, you can even do a "reverse" lookup to find who owns a particular phone number. Or find a particular kind of business in the Yellow Pages, and find it on the map.
http://www.whitepages.com
http://www.yellowpages.com


Google Earth   Enhance your trip by viewing an aerial view of the area.   Images of the entire globe. Zoom in to neighborhood view.  Large cities and popular tourist areas will have amazing detail.   Search for addresses or by city name or park name, or by global co-ordinates.  Click on this site, and download the free software which will then allow you to see the images.  Warning, once hooked, you can spend many hours viewing the globe!  Hint:  search for places with large, sudden elevation changes (rim of Grand Canyon, or Half Dome in Yosemite National Park) grab the map and slowly drag it -- you will think you are at the edge of that cliff.    Shows elevation, too.  Note, the images are not live, but simply amazing.
Try searching for:
"Half-dome, Yosemite"
"Grand Canyon National Park"
"Hoover Dam"
"Man-made islands, Dubai"
"Pedro Miguel Locks, Panama Canal"
"Av Mirasol, Algarrobo, Chile"  (See the world's largest swimming pool.   Pacific coast, due west of Santiago)
http://earth.google.com/

Google Maps and Google Maps Street Level - Search for an address, plan a route.    Many addresses will show a pop-up -- click on "Street view"   for a street level of the house or business.  Grab the image and drag to left or right to see the buildings next door or across the street.   Click on one of the white arrows to move up or down the street, one house at a time.  (I amused myself for hours, viewing my childhood houses!)
http://maps.google.com/

Weather Underground -- Local weather conditions and weather radar.   Valuable resource.  Search by city, airport code, or ZIP.   Current weather conditions, warnings, 5-day forecast, highs and lows.  Click "Local radar" for a larger radar image.  Track tropical storms and hurricanes as well. 
http://www.wunderground.com/







All above links checked 05/30/2009


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