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Google Maps vs Yahoo Maps and Geotagging

I love Google Maps! I used to use Mapblast and still contend its line directions are the best way to present driving directions. Are Google Maps accurate? Using Sergey Chernyshev’s tool to compare Google Maps and Yahoo Maps, I am surprised to find that although Google Maps has more detail in Europe, Yahoo maps appears to be more accurate in the US (at least in the areas I checked).

I found Sergey Chernyshev’s site while reading Thomas Hawk’s review of Flickr’s new geotagging option. Thomas Hawk is the Chief Evangelist for the photo sharing site Zooomr which makes his review of Flickr so much better. Zooomr was reviewed by C|Net 7 days ago. Geotagging is the practice of associating GPS coordinates with a picture, blog, post, or other information. GeoURL is a service mapping URLs to specific locations on the planet.

Geotagging is unhealthy for the paranoid because placing coordinates on a photo, or blog entry, publishes publically (in most cases) your exact location at an exact time. Some people may decry this a privacy issue (remember, you voluntarily put the information in the public’s eye) or declare it dangerous as "the bad people" could derive patterns in your life and track you down. It may be wise to not geotag your house or neighborhood but in reality does it really matter if people know that on Tuesday at 3:03pm you were standing by a cool statue? Personally, I wish my camera automatically put the coordinates with the EXIF information on the pictures and that the photo services would automatically grab that info. Some cameras do this already.

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