Google lets users edit maps ‘Wikipedia-style’

12/04/2013

Google has launched its Map Maker in the UK, letting users add their favourite places, in a similar style to user contributions on Wikipedia.

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The tool lets people add local information such as building outlines, hiking trials, rivers, railways and more to Google Maps.

Map Maker program manager Jessica Pfund said: “People can edit and update anything from historic buildings and streets to agricultural land. We encourage everyone to get involved and help to build Google Maps in the UK.“

Contributions made through the browser-based map editor are reviewed by other users and Google staff, in a system similar to online encyclopaedia Wikipedia.

Once approved, map amendments will appear on Google Maps, Google Earth and the Maps mobile app.

The first additions were made by workers at Bletchley Park - Britain's codebreaking headquarters during World War II – who trialled the software.

The launch comes as Apple, Nokia and other rivals are investing heavily in "free-to-use" mapping technologies.

Google’s Map Maker was first introduced in 2008 to Cyprus, Iceland, Pakistan, Vietnam and several Caribbean Islands to help Google map these territories.

It’s now available in over 200 countries, including France, the US and Australia.

The service is available here:

http://www.google.com/mapmaker

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