A “multimedia map”: How to use Google Maps with embedded photos and videos

A Google map with embedded photos and videos becomes a “multimedia map” that provides for an interactive presentation tool for use in tourism, event planning, news reporting and other location-based presentations.

Google My Maps is a free web service with which a user can create and share a map; with some tricks, we can add photos and videos to a map, turning the map into a multimedia presentation that can be used for various communication needs.

Here are three maps that show how to use Google Maps, with embedded photos and videos, for typical uses such as: (a) local must-sees for tourists, (b) route for a marathon race, and (c) campaign stops in the 2012 U.S. presidential race.

Click the screenshots below to access the corresponding map in a new window. The first two maps are student works from my open online course, Google Mapping for Communicators; the third map is a demo in a tutorial I wrote on how to embed photos and videos in Google map.

The first map is created by Stanislava Gaydazhieva and shows several suggestions for all those who travel to Salzburg, Austria and don’t want to miss the most important stuff.

How to use Google Maps Engine

The second map, by Vivek Mittal, plots the route and key stops of a marathon race. And here is how Vivek describes the map:

1. Map indicates the track for run with ‘A’ as start point and ‘B’ as finish point. 2. I use 2 layers – one to indicate spots on the track and second to indicate the track itself. 3. Used different icons, added text & pictures.

How to use Google Maps Engine

The third map, for demonstration purpose, only shows a selected few campaign stops for three candidates in the 2012 U.S. presidential race, with each candidate having a separate layer containing the stops he made.

How to use Google Maps EngineObviously, the uses for such “multimedia maps” go beyond travel, event and news reporting. Any communication needs that involve the showing of locations can use such a map – archaeological findings, historical records, vacation log, etc.

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About Mu Lin

Dr. Mu Lin is a digital journalism professional and educator in New Jersey, United States. Dr. Lin manages an online marketing company. He also manages MulinBlog Online J-School (www.mulinblog.com/mooc), a free online journalism training program, which offers courses such as Audio Slideshow Storytelling; Introduction to Social Media Marketing; Writing for the Web; Google Mapping for Communicators; Introduction to Data Visualization; Introduction to Web Metrics and Google Analytics.
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