Monday, December 01, 2008

microsoft maps

Has anyone ever seen before?

Basically Microsoft is trying to do a Google. In some respects they've done it better, in other they've shot themselves in the face, taken a picture of the bloody remains, posted it onto the internet, added the functionality to click random elements, and somehow formed an online application that is supposed to do what Googlemaps does.

Where they've done well is they've taken the maps and added a 3D perspective; so now not only can you look at your house from above, but from an angle too. It's rather good.

When it works - it keeps asking me to download the special beta app, the equivalent of google earth. I've tried this and it's now asking me if I want to make MSN my default homepage and MSN live my default search (NO I DON'T, I pray to the google).

Still - it's good to see how someone else with millions of pounds of budget attempts this.

One thing that has often puzzled me. Why do these free map apps make so much money? I've a mate who's a map specialist, he's worked for a few companies dotted round the country. It seems to be big business. I can understand the TomTom model, but where do googlemaps and microsoft maps make the money? Surely mapping the whole nation, taking photos from air, land, sea, undergrond, at a slight right angle, from space, in UV, IR, Full-colour, hybrid, sepia, with all houses painted pink, etc - it must cost a lot. Do they really earn this money back?

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