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Web site maps make navigating easy

CyberMaps July 25, 1997
Web posted at: 9:19 p.m. EDT (0119 GMT)

From CNN Interactive Writer Wayne Drash

(CNN) -- Want to pick the best route in or out of a city without sifting through maps sprawled over the dashboard? The answer is just a click away.

Internet mapping sites feature detailed maps that can pinpoint street locations, churn out road conditions and provide destination routes. Most sites let users zoom in and out on locales. Extensive search engines for more specific inquiries are nearby.

For travelers or those who simply want to locate a specific place, the sites exemplify one of the most useful and creative applications of the Web.

News junkies can have a field day, too, zoning in on the topic of the day. Where exactly was suspected serial killer Andrew Cunanan's body found on Miami Beach? Using DeLorme's CyberAtlas, the answer comes easy.

The following is a list of sites to help navigate around the world:

  • DeLorme, an atlas company and leader in computer mapping, provides one of the most extensive U.S. mapping systems on the Web. International users, however, may be disappointed in DeLorme's lack of world maps.

    DeLorme's CyberRouter lets users plug in a desired to-and-from location, and the site instantly responds with the distance and approximate time of the trip.

    CyberAtlas, a page dedicated to locating cities and towns, can pinpoint even the smallest of towns. A colleague was dumbfounded when the site found Orchard Hill, Georgia, an unincorporated town in his neck of the woods.

    DeLorme also has a special site for maps in the news. A particularly interesting map locates the area, neighborhood and the closest street to where TWA Flight 800 crashed off the Long Island coast last year.

  • MapQuest offers driving directions and suggested routes for travelers, in some cases providing step-by-step, turn-by-turn detail. The site also features an international atlas that lets users focus on just about any place in the world.

    Another great feature is the site's free map personalization. Planning a wedding? With MapQuest's customized personalization, a user can place an icon where the wedding is to take place, print out a map and send it to friends and relatives.

    The site's biggest drawback is that it takes a while for maps to download. But the wait is well worth it.

  • CityNet Maps supplies users with in-depth maps to cities and regions around the world, whether it be an extensive look at Greece or a more focused search of Atlanta.

    Twin Cities Traffic Net
  • SmarTraveler targets users in select U.S. cities who want to find out what roads to avoid before heading into traffic mayhem. SmarTraveler provides up-to-the-minute traffic reports and lists congested routes to avoid in Boston, Philadelphia, Cincinnati and Washington, D.C.

  • Twin Cities Traffic Net wins the prize for the best localized mapping site, supplying Minneapolis residents with easy-to-read and regularly updated traffic report maps. Each road is color-coded according to its level of congestion or average travel speed. And to the glee of users, it's a quick download.

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Related sites:

DeLorme's CyberAtlas
CityNet Maps
Twin Cities Traffic Net
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