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Getting web map multi-touch working...


iPF Noob
May 15, 2010
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Today I've been trying to get the EcoMap Costa Rica maps working on an iPad.

At the moment, the Bing Maps JavaScript ('AJAX') control and OpenLayers do not support multi-touch. (Bing Maps Silverlight does but of course the iPad doesn't support Silverlight, and a Microsoft Surface won't fit in my pocket). So I've been trying to adapt the map to work with Google Maps.

To get multi-touch working, I needed to use Google Maps API v3 rather than the current 'standard' v2. This required a little bit more work. As expected, adding KML layers was easy enough. I've also skipped an initial (2008 era) survey grid and a layer-selection control.
However, due to the lack of high resolution imagery of rural Costa Rica, two map tile overlays are essential. These were created by MapCruncher and are served using Amazon S3/Cloudfront. Next month I'll write an article for GeoWebGuru about how I got this tiling to work with Google Maps.

Generally it works, but it looks like the iPad/Safari/Google Maps v3 combination has a bug with the image tilings. It works for a short time, but quickly hits a memory or pointer problem, stops loading new tiles and displays old ones in the wrong places. Have a look, here:
EcoMap Costa Rica: Interactive iPad Map

These work fine on Firefox on a PC, and I've just installed Safari on an XP PC to check, and again it works fine. So it looks like an iPad specific problem.

Another problem which is probably more of a Google Maps API v3 'beta' problem because it affects all browsers: All of the icons are plotted at the same large size. This is actually quite useful on the iPad, but they do look big on a browser. I've tried adjusting the sizes in the KML styles, and it looks like these are being ignored by Google Maps.

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