From boing boing on easy to use mapping software:
This time last year, I met Rich Gibson at Dorkbot and he told me that he had just started work on a Mapping Hacks book for O’Reilly. This week, I had the opportunity to peruse the finished book, co-written with Schuyler Erle and Jo Walsh. As a “map curious” newcomer to digital cartography, I can say with certainty that it’s an engaging and downright inspiring book. From Google Maps to Dodgeball, location-enhanced technologies are all the rage these days. But it’s easy to get lost in the hype of geocoding, Geographic Information Systems, and even GPS. Fortunately, as with the other books in O’Reilly’s Hacks series, Mapping Hacks is all about learning by doing.
The hacks range from gems like #7, perfectly titled “Will the Kids Barf?” (how to create an index of road curvedness), to “#39 View Your Photo Thumbnails on a Flash Map,” to “#76 Explore the Effects of Global Warming.” I’m told that even experienced map hackers will get off on the open source GIS tricks, geocoding Web hacks, and other technical material. For me though, Mapping Hacks is a perfect compass to guide me into the realm of digital cartography with plenty of welcome rest stops and fun tourist attractions along the way.