Friday, July 27, 2007

Weekly Google Code Roundup for July 23-27th

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Google Code - Updates: Weekly Google Code Roundup for July 23-27th



It has been a busy time for conferences. From MashupCamp last week, to OSCON and The Ajax Experience this week. While some of the teams have been talking to developers at these events, others have been producing new APIs for you all to use.

In API and developer-product news...

A new API was added to the AJAX Search API, Image Search.

Paul MacDonald blogged about the new features in the Google Mashup Editor, including sorting, compact paging, the new select control, and more. He also discussed various GME developer resources.

We have released a new tool that we have been playing with, the Google Singleton Detector, as open source. Its job is to find singletons and global state in the Java code that we produce.

While working on the Zvents mapplet, Michael Geary developed a nifty utility function called GAsync(). This lets you make several requests in a single call. Mike has kindly donated this function to the Mapplets API so that everyone can use it.

In other Map news, the Maps API team created utility functions to give you more information about your lines and shapes: GPolyline.getLength, GPolyline.getBounds, GPolygon.getArea, and GPolygon.getBounds.

You can also test your driving directions skills using the new directions API.

Around Google

Robots Exclusion Protocol: now with even more flexibility: Dan Crow explains X-Robots-Tag HTTP headers.

Computer science resources for academics: At the main Google campus this week we're hosting the Google Faculty Summit, which involves universities all over participating in discussions about what we're up to in research-land as well as computer science education - something very near and dear to us.

The newest Google Earth Enterprise: Today, we're pleased to announce the newest version of Google Earth Enterprise. The enterprise solution brings us into close contact with some of the most advanced users of geospatial tools, and by meeting their needs, it helps make the product better for everyone. And enterprise users are some of the most active in using the products and also making contributions to the Google Earth and Maps user community, with data, blogs and mashups.

Featured Projects

The BBC Flood Tracking mapplet is a fantastic example of citizen journalism. This map includes UK flood alert information, emergency center locations, photos submitted by local residents, user-generated YouTube videos, and audio clips by BBC Radio correspondents.

Jookebox is a music mashup that pulls in data from iTunes and Amazon to give you a comprehensive view of what's happening on the music scene.

Google Tech Talks

Inbox Zero is a fantastic talk by Merlin Mann, a well known productivity guru and creator of the popular 43 folders website. Merlin talks about Getting Things Done, the importance of getting your inbox to zero, and strategies for dealing with high volume email.

Erlang is celebrating its 20th birthday this year, and is grabbing developers interest due to its concurrency model. This talk will cover the history of Erlang, demonstrate major design goals with a few programming examples and also touch on the subject of the future of Erlang.

Erlang also has the best movie made about it: Erlang the movie. A real classic.

The Google Test Automation Conference showcases lightning talks by Harry Robinson, Dan North, Steve Freeman, Nat Pryce, Christine Newman, Andrin von Rechenberg, Ade Oshineye, Timur Hairullin, James Richardson, James Lyndsay, Jordan Dea-Mattson, Curtis "Ovid" Poe.

Launchd: One Program to Rule them All: In this talk, Dave, who developed launchd, will discuss the rationale behind launchd and how the program came to be.

URL: http://google-code-updates.blogspot.com/2007/07/weekly-google-code-roundup-for-july-23.html

Thursday, July 26, 2007

[Gd] New utility function for Google Mapplets: GAsync()

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Official Google Maps API Blog: New utility function for Google Mapplets: GAsync()

The Mapplets API is like the Maps API with a twist: asynchronous calls. If you've ever used XMLHttpRequest then you've dealt with asynchronous calls before, but writing fast Mapplets can require keeping track of several requests at the same time.

While working on the Zvents mapplet, Michael Geary developed a nifty utility function called GAsync(). This lets you make several requests in a single call, like:

 GAsync( map, 'getSize', 'getBounds', 'getCenter',  function( size, bounds, center ) {    // search using size, bounds, and center  }); 

Mike has kindly donated this function to the Mapplets API so that everyone can use it. We hope that it helps you write fast and simple code for your Mapplets!

For more information on the creation and use of GAsync, check out Mike's blog post about it. The Mapplets API docs and forum will help you get started on your own Mapplet.


URL: http://googlemapsapi.blogspot.com/2007/07/new-utility-function-for-mapplets.html

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

[Gdev] BBC Flood Tracking

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Google Code - Featured Projects: BBC Flood Tracking

Screenshot
Author: BBC
Google APIs used:
This map includes UK flood alert information, emergency center locations, photos submitted by local residents, user-generated YouTube videos, and audio clips by BBC Radio correspondents.

URL: http://google-code-featured.blogspot.com/2007/07/bbc-flood-tracking.html

[Gd] Test your driving directions skills (and our latest features)!

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Official Google Maps API Blog: Test your driving directions skills (and our latest features)!

I don't drive. Well, I used to, but then I realized I hated driving on highways, making left turns, and parallel parking. And then after a little incident, I hated making right turns too. So, I've taken up walking and (getting lost on) public transportation. This is all well and good except that I have no idea how to get anywhere besides the bus stop and the closest Wal-Mart, and this lack of knowledge can sometimes land me in not-so-fun situations. Sometimes I wish I did drive, just so I'd be forced to learn the streets around me.

But now, with the addition of driving directions in the API, I can use Google Maps to learn the optimal routes from point A to point B without ever leaving the house or venturing inside a wretched car. Below, you can play my driving directions game. After clicking the "Start New Game" button, a start (green) icon and an end (red) icon will appear. The goal of the game is to guess the (Google-calculated) route from the start to the end. After ending the game by clicking on the red icon to finish your route, you'll see the Google route show up in green and your score show up in the score board.

In the scoreboard, you can see an "AREA" score and a "LENGTH" score. The area score is my attempt to measure your deviation from the Google route, and is calculated by forming a shaded pink GPolygon from your route + Google's route, calling getArea() on the poly, and comparing it to the total area of the map. This isn't perfect, as sometimes the routes will cross eachother and cancel eachother out in the area formula. That's why I added the length score, which is calculated by calling getLength() on your GPolyline and the Google-calculated GPolyline, and comparing the results. If you can get a high score of 99.* in both AREA/LENGTH, then you're doing pretty well. Have fun!

Link to Driving Directions Game

URL: http://googlemapsapi.blogspot.com/2007/07/test-your-driving-directions-skills-and.html

Drum Roll... The winners of the 2007 Google-O'Reilly Open Source Awards are...

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Google Code - Updates: Drum Roll... The winners of the 2007 Google-O'Reilly Open Source Awards are...



Last night, July 24, at the Open Source Conference in Portland the winners of the coveted Google-O'Reilly Open Source Award were announced.

Following in the footsteps of past key contributors and open source visionaries, the five winners for 2007 are :

Karl Fogel - Best Community Builder
There's a common saying that open source isn't so much about the code itself, but about the communities that thrive around it. And Karl has become an oracle when it comes to the management of open source communities. As the founder and leader of the Subversion project, the harmony within the Subversion community has been attributed to Karl, because of his consistent leadership and maintenance of the culture-of-respect. This and his transfer of wisdom on community management into a book ("Producing Open Source Software", O'Reilly Media, also at producingoss.com) makes Karl our 2007 Best Community Builder.

Pamela Jones - Best FUD Fighter
When the SCO drama was being played out, one website became the place to get your knowledge. Pamela, or PJ, as she is known, leads research and reporting of legal events important to the FOSS community. Through her tremendous work, Groklaw continues to be the place to get our regular dose of legal insight and analysis.

Aaron Leventhal - Best Accessibility Architect
Aaron Leventhal is a long-time supporter of accessibility efforts. Earlier in his career he worked on a Braille publishing system used by teachers, publishers and individual Braille readers. He later joined Netscape as accessibility architect for Mozilla development, and has been involved with the Mozilla project almost since its beginnings. Aaron has single-handedly succeeded in turning Firefox from being an also-ran in web accessibility to being the preferred accessibility solution going forward.

David Recordon - Best Strategist
OpenID has gone from hack to Internet staple in an incredibly short period of time. Dave Recordon has turned OpenID into a viable alternative to non-open identity systems. He has taken on many organizations and made real headway towards pushing Identity into the open source space. This guy knows challenging, and he's met and conquered every challenge. For that reason David is this year's Best Strategist for his work on OpenID. All this, and he's not yet old enough to buy alcohol in the US.

Paul Vixie - Outstanding Lifetime Contributions
For decades Paul been one of the key players in the Domain Name System. He wrote and still maintains BIND, the nameserver most of the Internet uses. He's co-founded MAPS, a non-profit that fights spam. He's the operator of the F root server and he also holds the record for the most CERT security advisories. For his many contributions significant to the existence of the Internet, the "Outstanding Lifetime Contributions" winner is Paul Vixie.

Check here for OSCON pictures and blog posts from OSCON and the Open Source Awards event.

We would like to thank The Google and O'Reilly Open Source Awards Committee members and especially to each of you who participated in our first open nomination process for this award.

Until next year, please join us in congratulating each of our worthy winners for 2007.

URL: http://google-code-updates.blogspot.com/2007/07/drum-roll-winners-of-2007-google.html

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Monday, July 23, 2007

Google Singleton Detector released

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Google Code - Updates: Google Singleton Detector released



We take testing very seriously at Google. You may have seen our testing blog and how we even test on the toilet.

We also like to create automated tools to make our lives easier and in the testing world this can mean having code to watch your back.

We have released a new tool that we have been playing with, the Google Singleton Detector, as open source. Its job is to find singletons and global state in the Java code that we produce. But wait, why would I care to find out where singletons may be in my code? In some cases they can make testing difficult and hide problems with your design. There's a bit more to it than that, so check out the FAQ for more info.

Do you maintain Java code and need to keep it nice and clean? Give the singleton detector a try!

Many thanks to David Rubel and the team for creating this, and working to get it out into the open source world.

URL: http://google-code-updates.blogspot.com/2007/07/google-singleton-detector-released.html

[Gd] v2.85: Wondering how looong your polylines are or how BIG your polygons are? We have the answers!

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Official Google Maps API Blog: v2.85: Wondering how looong your polylines are or how BIG your polygons are? We have the answers!

In the latest version of the API, we're introducing utility functions to give you more information about your lines and shapes: GPolyline.getLength, GPolyline.getBounds, GPolygon.getArea, and GPolygon.getBounds. Below, I've modified the code from the E-Z Digitizer tutorial to show you the length or area of the drawn poly, and let you zoom to the bounds of the drawn poly.

Link to GPolyline/GPolygon Methods Demo

Check out the documentation for more information, and post in the forum if you have any questions.


URL: http://googlemapsapi.blogspot.com/2007/07/v285-wondering-how-looong-your.html