Read more about why this was 10 years in the making below the demo.
Okay, you're right that didn't take 10 years to create. In fact with my SharePoint Bing Mapper platform in only took a couple of days to put that prototype together.
So what did I mean about 10 years in the making? Roughly 10 years ago I decided I was going to build an application for mapping golf courses (Golf Buddy was what I wanted to call it). I bought a Dell Axiom and a Bluetooth GPS device and got to work investigating.
All I needed to get the application running was going to be:
- A way to map the course. I think the little known fact that I have a pilots license was inspiring this (and other application ideas). I was eager to fly over golf courses and use LIDAR (or whatever it was called) to get the accuracy down to the millimenter
- An application that could have a moving map interface that would sync with the bluetooth GPS device.
- People to buy handheld devices to run the application on. Folks, the handhelds had no sexy back then, zero, zilch. I was even a bit nervous to let people see me with my geek kit, friends snickered.
- And of course it would have been helpful to have a unified platform to make distribution of the application a reasonable endeavor.
- Bing Maps has mapped golf courses down to small details, accurate enough to be adequate for a golf course mapping application.
- HTML5 allows the use of a get location function that in some cases can be pretty accurate when couple with as device that has GPS.
- Handheld devices got sexy and widely accepted.
- The latest web standards and browsers allow delivery of a quality application through the web browser and across platforms.
- And on my side, the SharePoint Bing Mapper application I use to develop mapping solutions makes creating a mapping based application quick and completely pain free ;) (please pardon the slight exaggeration).