“In-class” assignment: Google Maps

Hope everyone is staying safe throughout the recent inclement weather. I’ve been vindicated in choosing to cancel class this evening, as WVU has followed suit in the face of frozen catastrophe from the skies. What better way to spend an evening in than by pulling up a computer and making a map?

Don’t panic – this won’t hurt much. What you need to do in lieu of class this evening is head to my friend Grant’s blog, where you’ll find a simple tutorial on creating a map in Google and adding it to your website or blog. Have a look through (we’re only dealing with step #1, unless you feel like going further), and use it as your guide for this assignment:

  1. Write a post that incorporates location in some way (e.g., I went to this restaurant; I saw Da’Sean Butler here, or whatever). It does not need to be hard news (yet), but it should be a full-fledged posted.
  2. Using the above guide, create a map in Google Maps with a marker for this location. You’ll use the same login you use for Google Reader.
  3. Attach the map to your blog post just like you would an image (directions are included with the how-to link).
  4. Publish!
  5. Post the link (with a description of what’s being mapped) to the comments of this post.

This should be a simple assignment, so the due date is by the end of today (so midnight). The assignment is a quickie if you follow the directions, and you’ve all got this class time free. Get it written, get it posted, and be prepared to discuss your work in next week’s class. Tomorrow’s readings will deal further with the subject of location.

I don’t want you to overcomplicate this, but here are a few tips:

  • Add markers by clicking on the name of your map in the left bar, then click the “Edit” button. The tools for markers and drawing appear in the top left corner of your map. If they don’t, you may need to re-click the map name (you MUST add these pointers).
  • Test your post. If the map doesn’t look right, try re-copying and pasting the link.
  • If the map is incorrectly zoomed on your page, click “link” then “customize and preview embedded map.” In the window that pops up, zoom the map in or out as necessary, then copy the text in the window below and paste it to your site. You can also change the size of the map here.
  • You can see a sample post that shows what I want at my personal blog via this link.

If you’ve got questions, I’ve added a “chat” link to the left menu of the course eCampus page. I’ll be available here for Digital Office Hours from 6-830 p.m. this evening to answer questions – you can also use the chat window to discuss what you’re doing with the group.

Read & Respond will be posted tomorrow as usual.

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39 Responses to “In-class” assignment: Google Maps

  1. Julia Day: My home is Erie. PA where the snow falls but stays off the roads. http://singitdontsayit.wordpress.com/

    • aaaaaargh says:

      Good work, Julia, but check out my “tips” section in the assignment. Use the “customize” link to zoom in more on your area of emphasis. As a fellow Erie County native, though, I can appreciate your complaint!

  2. Cambria Stubelt: http://ourgoldenlife.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/a-level-of-cabin-fever-i-didnt-know-existed/

    This is our street in Morgantown, WV that apparently doesn’t exist to the city officials or whoever decides which roads get plowed.

  3. http://fromplaygroundstopantsuits.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/google-map

    This is a map that shows the location of WVU Career Services Center, for all of you who are starting to look for jobs. This is a great place to start.

    • aaaaaargh says:

      It works, but what’s the shape for? Also, it might be helpful to add links to the career services center site in your post and in the map (you can attach text and links in the window that comes up when you click the point or shape).

  4. nochickflickmoments says:

    I mapped out places to go on Valentine’s Day in Morgantown. (mostly movie theaters and restaurants.)

    http://nochickflickmoments.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/men-of-morgantown-look-like-you-know-what-youre-doing-this-v-day/

  5. grcarey says:

    http://grcarey.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/an-empty-landmark-until-feb-20/

    A link to a map locating the WVU Coliseum. Although the venue has been kind to the men’s basketball team most of this season, they won’t have another game there until Feb. 20. Behavior, however, was much more normal from the Mountaineer faithful last night.

    • aaaaaargh says:

      Good work Greg. Adding some links to the post could provide more information about this “unruly behavior” of which you speak (you know, in case anyone HASN’T heard about it yet).

  6. blackedoutblog says:

    http://blackedoutblog.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/my-favorite-restaraunts-in-morgantown-w-va/

    I made a list of the five best places to eat when you’re in downtown Morgantown. This list can be useful for visitors staying in at the Waterfront Hotel or the Hotel Morgan.

    • aaaaaargh says:

      An excellent service map, Travis, and your recommendations help personalize it. Most of these restaurants have websites – you could add value by linking to these in both the text and the map points.

  7. gavinwv says:

    http://gavinwvu.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/carpools-and-little-avatars/
    Here’s a map to my wedding reception location.
    Soon to be the stage for a great new digitally interactive party experience.

    • aaaaaargh says:

      Nice job, Gavin. It’s not critical, but your data point is the default from the search engine (which is why it has that “A”). You should try personalizing this by placing a point of your own – this allows you to add your own data to the pop-up window and use more specific icons.

      Also, you’re sick (but funny).

  8. http://tuneinturnoff.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/things-to-see-when-in-seattle-for-pax/

    Rachel – A guide for things to check out in Seattle, when in town for PAX, or whenever.

    • aaaaaargh says:

      Great – not only are there multiple points, you’ve provided some nice descriptions in the bubbles. I haven’t been to PAX since it was held on the other side of the lake, but you’re spot-on about that comic shop. But no link to PAX (or Penny-Arcade)?

  9. ecmoore19 says:

    http://evanmoore.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/best-places-to-backpack-around-morgantown/

    Here’s a map with three of my favorite places to backpack around the Morgantown area.

    • aaaaaargh says:

      This is some really excellent work. Not only do you provide multiple data points and solid descriptions in-text, you add details to the pop-ups for those points. The only criticism I would make is that your map is so zoomed-in that we can’t see any reference points (e.g., roads, cities).

  10. hillbillie22 says:

    http://hillarybaum.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/morgantown-bar-crawl/

    Here are the locations for the bar crawl on February 19, 2010 hosted by the RubberU. If you’re interested let me know!

    • aaaaaargh says:

      Great idea for a story, Hillary – rather than just meet the requirements of the assignment, you’ve produced useful information for many readers. Your map is perhaps zoomed out a little much – closer would provide more detail for bar crawlers to-be – but your inclusion of the specials at each location is a particularly nice addition.

      Is there a website for the bar crawl? Seems like that would be a useful inclusion.

  11. kenziekat says:

    http://kenziekat.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/where-i-first-met-my-love/

    This is the place at which I first met Kenzie. A lovely little Shelter off the map in Preston County, right near the bus garage.

  12. Kander says:

    http://tvfrienemy.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/a-night-at-bdubs/

    This is BW3 in Morgantown. My friends and I get pretty intense with the trivia game there. I did have trouble with linking the image of the map. It kept telling it wasn’t valid. Boo. So I embedded it and now you just have to zoom in.

  13. Here is a map to my home in York, Pennsylvania, where believe it or not they have more snow than we do.

    http://thefontanareport.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/my-snow-home/

  14. austindrizzy says:

    http://austindrizzy.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/in-class-assignment/

    I like to eat out in Morgantown and I thought I would marker the best four places to eat on High Street. I like to think I eat more than I cook, but as of right now these are my favorites places to fulfill my hunger

  15. Grant Smith says:

    Hey Bob,

    Your students did a great job! Makes me miss Morgantown.

  16. hillbillie22 says:

    here’s the facebook event for the bar crawl:

    http://www.facebook.com/#!/event.php?eid=262685313951

    and here’s the RubberU website, just an FYI:

    http://www.therubberu.com/defaultnew.html

  17. Somehow I missed that we were supposed to link our Google Maps after we posted them to our personal blogs.

    http://brittanynelson.wordpress.com/2010/02/09/the-pre-blizzard-meal/ This is a map showing where I went to eat that previous weekend.

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