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Change the map style in the blog?

Travel Forums System Talk Change the map style in the blog?

1. Posted by kostlin (Respected Member 66 posts) 7y

Is it possible to choose or use a different map style, maybe something like google maps within the blog? Or can one link to a trip advisor map by inserting the html (other blog sites allow this?)

2. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4808 posts) 7y

It's currently not possible to include different map systems on the blogs here.
Could you explain what it is you're missing in (or not liking about) the maps here that you'd want to do that?

3. Posted by kostlin (Respected Member 66 posts) 7y

Firstly I find the map rather bland and boring (not as interesting say as Google maps)

But it would also be nice to be able to have pins on the map as well as being able to click on a photo (small thumbnail) and take you to that specific post?

I know other blog allow one to use other maps form other site such as trip advisor and you simply input the html code. That would also be a nice feature. I understand it can have issues with security, but simple html code would be good?

4. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4808 posts) 7y

Quoting kostlin

Firstly I find the map rather bland and boring (not as interesting say as Google maps)

I actually kinda agree with you here; Sam and Peter seem to prefer these colors though, for the way they fit with the rest of the site. And to be sure, once you've mapped a couple of trips on there, the lines give you really nice and colorful results. (See for example Utrecht's map for a far-out example of that.) I guess we focus more on displaying people's travels themselves than on displaying the world.
Technically it'd be quite doable to give you control over the colors used on the map (they're already specified in an external configuration file), so all it'd take would be to convince the overlords that doing this would be a good idea. (Or as a halfway compromise, maybe we could specify some alternative 'themes' which would be guaranteed not to clash with the colors used by the trips and not stand out too much for the rest of the site, while still being more colorful than the current default?)

But it would also be nice to be able to have pins on the map as well as being able to click on a photo (small thumbnail) and take you to that specific post?

We almost have that. If you specify a daterange with a blog post (In the "Describes Travel From: [ ] Until [ ]" input fields), and then also specify dates when you're in a location on the map, the map locations and the blog posts describing those locations will be automatically associated; if you click on the location in the full map view, there'll be a link to the blog post, and the blog post will have a link to the map.

Our "pins" on the map aren't as graphically intensive as on other maps (just dots) - but because of that you can have a whole lot more of them (thousands without slowing down performance too much, while other maps would grind to a complete halt). And although we promote the default "trip" metaphor of stringing lots of these markers together, it's just as doable to just make them one-off and have individual pins scattered all over the place. (And if you position photos in the same location, they'll be integrated in the popup window when you hover over that marker.)

I know other blog allow one to use other maps form other site such as trip advisor and you simply input the html code. That would also be a nice feature. I understand it can have issues with security, but simple html code would be good?

Heh, unfortunately there's nothing "simple" about HTML. It's virtually impossible to filter out code which could be used maliciously (all elements could have attributes to run script), so you'd need to specify purely which elements and attributes are allowed - but the content of attributes could be really varied, so this ends up being just as hard.
We put a stronger focus on security than many other sites, and so far this hasn't been a decision we've come to regret.

5. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 7y

Most (all?) travel blogging sites don't allow anything from any other site. We integrate analytics, twitter, feedburner and also videos from several different suppliers, as well as photos from any site. We have been considering a move to Google maps, mostly from a multilingual perspective, but I can't give any ETA for that right now.

The tripadvisor maps are not html that I am aware of; in that case it would only be a static 'map', basically a photo. You could insert a photo and a html link without problems here. If it's an interactive map it means opening up for inserting either flash or javascript, both of which do actually have real security issues.

Clicking on the stops on the map when inserted into a blog entry does bring up the map with nearby photos. For example click on one of the stops at the map embedded in the entry on this blog entry. We kind of work the other way around here than other maps I guess, as the map is integrated within the blog and by clicking on it you usually end up leaving the blog. With a lot of maps being created that aren't tied to a blog, this is the only way that seemed to make immediate sense. That said, we are evaluating this and how it could be done better.... what's a system that you are familiar with that you prefer?