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Archive for the ‘Google Fusion Tables’ Category

This post demonstrates ¬†a quick and simple way that you can map addresses and associated information in Google Maps. The technique uses Google Docs and, therefore, you need to have a Google account. To demonstrate the method, I used a Microsoft (MS) Excel spreadsheet that contains the names and addresses of the 31 state Sea Grant programs. Two additional fields in the ¬†spreadsheet contain the names of each program’s director and a link to the program’s web site. I obtained this information from the National Sea Grant website. The steps I used to map the 31 program locations were as follows (using FireFox):

  • In Google Docs, I clicked on the “CREATE” button and selected “Table” from the pop-up menu.

  • I highlighted “From this computer” and then clicked the “Browse” button to select and upload the MS Excel spreadsheet from my computer.

  • After stepping through a couple of dialogs, Google creates the table (called a Fusion Table) and highlights fields it ‘thinks’ contain location information. (Note that it highlighted the state program names and the addresses.)

  • Since I wanted to use the address field (column) to map the locations of the Sea Grant programs, I clicked the “Edit” button above the table and chose to “Modify columns.” I changed the Name column from a location “Type” to a text “Type.” I also changed the “Format” of the Web site column to “Link” to make it active in my browser. (Remember to close the dialog once you are done.)

  • To finish, I selected “Map” from the “Visualize” menu that is above the table. The following output map was produced.

The accuracy of the mapped locations will only be as good as the address information. Go ahead and check your Sea Grant program’s location on the map and see if it is correct. Let us know. Note that you can symbolize the location markers in various ways and you also can share links to the map, or embed it into a website. I will follow up with more information on how to use Google Fusion tables with Google Maps.

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