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‘Point Based Clustering, GPX Parser, RouteSavvy and Mini-Map’ Modules for Bing Maps V7 Announced

Bing Maps V7 Modules 'Point Base Clustering, GPX Parser, RouteSavvy and Mini-MapBing Maps v7 Module CodePlex Project which was kicked off last year in September 2011, with a purpose to create a single place where developers can find and share useful modules that expand the functionality of the Bing Maps V7 API — currently has 10 modules submitted to the project.

In a January 27, blog post, Ricky Brundritt, EMEA Bing Maps Technology Solution Professional, highlight the four newest modules added to this project:

Point Based Clustering Module
“The point based algorithm prevents pushpins from overlapping and jumping around by only clustering the data when the zoom level changes,” Brundritt informed.

“Additionally this module keeps track of clustered information for each zoom level, making the algorithm faster the more you use it. This improved UI experience does affect performance and as such this algorithm is recommended for 2000 or less pushpins,” Brundritt notes.

Explaining, he said, “the older client side clustering module that used a grid based algorithm which is fast, but requires re-clustering the data every time the map moved. This allows for 5000+ pushpins to be clustered in a fraction of a second but often results in pushpins jumping around the map as you pan.”

GPX Parser module allows you to easily pass in a URL to a GPX file and have it parsed into an EntityCollection which you can then render on Bing Maps. GPX is a type of XML file that is commonly used by GPS devices. It can be used to describe waypoints, tracks, and routes. Majority of the XML tags for V1 and V1.1 of the GPX schema are supported and all data is stored in a Metadata property, which is added to each entity.

Route Optimization – RouteSavvy Module created by OnTerra Systems, a Bing Maps Partner – “is a simple but powerful tool that can take anywhere from 3 or 4 locations to hundreds of locations. It reorders them based on whether you’d like to visit them in a “round-trip” OR as a one-way trip, with the last stop chosen either by you or by the software (whichever is preferred),” Brundritt explains.

Web developers can now easily integrate the RouteSavvy API into their web application by adding the RouteSavvy Map Module. The map module uses Ajax to call the RouteSavvy web service to optimize a given set of locations.

Route Optimization - RouteSavvy Module of Bing Maps V7

Mini-Map Module adds a small map at the right corner of the parent map that’s collapsible and shows the extents covered by the current map. “This module adds a mini map at the top right corner of the screen. Mini-map view helps to give a zoomed out overview of your location,” Brundritt concludes.

Here is a screen shot of the implemented Mini-Map module:

Mini-Map module of Bing Maps Ajax v7

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