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Science-Based Google Maps: How To

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Google Maps Trainers Corner

 

 

 

Uploading Content: Flickr and YouTube

In order to embed video and/or photos in a Google Map, the media needs to have a web address. We suggest using Flickr.com and You Tube (though you may find You Tube blocked from your school site) 
 

Uploading Photos to Flickr.com

  • Sign in to Flickr
  • Click "Upload Photos"
  • Click "Step 1: Choose Photos"
  • Browse to your chosen photo on your computer (yours will be on your flash drive or CD), choose it and click "Select"
  • Set Privacy level by ticking the appropriate radio button
  • Click Upload Photos
  • When uploaded a green check mark and “Finished!” message appears
  • Optional: click "Add a Description" and click "Save." This information will not appear in Google Maps, but it’s a good idea to title photos for easy identification later.
 
 

Uploading Video to YouTube.com

  • Sign in to YouTube
  • Click "Upload" (top right corner of the home page)
  • Browse to your chosen video on your computer (yours will be on your flash drive or CD if you've brought one from home), choose it
  • Click "Open"
  • Click "Upload Video"
  • To customize You Tube features go to the video page and click Edit Video (on the right of the page)
  • To customize your embed code (including turning off the "related videos" and changing the size) click the small circular star inside the square next to the embed code.
 
 
 

Create the map and find the site

Find the map and the site
  • Go to Google Maps and click on “My Maps” and sign into your Google account.
  • Look for the new map in the "Created By Others" section of My Maps (your instructor will let you know the map name ahead of time)
  • Keep the map unlisted until it is finished and then it can be made public (optional).
  • Check the Map Description - when creating your own map, enter a short description of your map, including the theme (i.e. invasive/native species, ecology, seasons, geology, etc)
  • Zoom all the way in to the location of your photo or video
  • Use the instructions below in conjunction with the QUEST Explorations Template map
     

 

 

Create Placemarks, Lines, and Shapes

Placemarks - click on the placemark/pinpoint tool icon, drag, and drop it to the place you want to mark

Find additional Google Maps icons for your map

 

Lines - click on the line tool icon, click once to start your line, click periodically along the path you want to create, double click to end the line.

Shapes - click the draw a shape tool icon, click once to start the shape, click periodically around the perimeter of the shape, double click to end complete the shape
 
 

 

 

Add Content to Your Bubble

Editing Modes

  • Plain Text Editor - use this when you just want to write a short note with no formatting
  • Rich Text Editor - use this editor when you want to add formatting to your bubble. Highlight the text you want to format then click the appropriate formatting icon: bold, italic, underline, font, text size, color, and highlight. You can also create a hyperlink to another web page - highlight the text you would like to turn into a link, click the "link" icon (looks like a chain), enter the URL for the page you want to link to, click OK. To create numbered lists and bulleted lists click on the appropriate icons. To insert an image, click the far right "picture" icon and paste the URL of the image into the pop-up window, click OK. Remember, your image must have a URL - see above for instructions on uploading your photos
  • HTML Editor - use this tool if you have HTML code to use. To embed video, copy the HTML embed code from YouTube and paste it into the bubble (more on this below). Remember, you must have an HTML embed code for your video and currently, YouTube is the prefered video tool (see above for a review of uploading your video to YouTube). NOTE: it is very difficult to add text to a bubble with an embedded video.
    • NOTE: you may want to change the dimensions of your video embed so it doesn't overtake your map - change the width and height using a 4:3 ratio (320x240 or 240x180 or 180x120)
    • If you want to only use the audio - edit the HTML to 200px width and 25px height (remember, there are 2 places - beginning and end of HTML - to change this information)

Change Your Pinpoint Icon

  • When your bubble is open, click once on the pinpoint icon in the top right of the bubble
  • Choose a new icon by clicking on it
  • To add your own icon, you must have a URL for the image you want to use. You can use a GIF, JPG, BMP, or PNG file. Images larger than 64x64 pixels will be scaled down

 

What Makes "Good" Content

  • Make sure to give your bubble a title
  • Create a bubble to give directions to the beginning of your Exploration or a parking area nearby. Add a hyperlink to specific directions and/or call attention to the Google direction links that will automatically appear at the bottom of the saved bubble.
  • Ask users to engage their senses at particular points - smell the..., look for the..., listen for...
  • Stick to your theme
  • Identify species and use the proper Latin names; explain if species are native or exotic/introduced
  • Identify a rock sample or discuss the geological history of the area
  • Talk about a feature of the environment related to the time of the year or season
  • Share the relationships between 2 or more species in the area
  • Give an overview of a restoration project
  • Add hyperlinks to volunteer/engagement opportunities, docent schedules, trainings, Flickr.com photostreams, etc.

 

 

Insert media

See a sample on the QUEST Explorations Template map

QUEST Photos on Flickr

QUEST makes all of our photos free for you to use in educational projects under Creative Commons licensing.
  • In your placemark/shape bubble, click on “Rich Text” and click on the picture icon (far right) - you will paste the URL of the image into the pop-up window.
  • Explore the photos that QUEST has posted on the Flickr photosharing site and choose one you would like to embed in your map bubble.
  • Click on the photo and in the "Actions" drop-down menu select "View all sizes." Click on the link for either the Thumbnail, Small, or Medium image size (these are the sizes we recommend using for a map)
  • Put your cursor over the image and right click (or Ctrl-click on a Mac) and select "Copy Image Address." 
  • Paste the entire URL into the pop-up window from your map and click OK.
  • The image will appear in your placemark/shape bubble and you can now type a caption (or any other information) below. Be sure to click OK on your bubble when you are done! (You can edit the bubble by clicking on it again.)
 
You can also use the process above to use other photos on Flickr.
  • Do a search for an image and when the results appear, click "advanced search."
  • Scroll to the bottom and check "Only search within Creative Commons licensed content" AND "Find content to modify, adapt, or build upon."
  • Be sure to attribute the photos you use appropriately.

 

Your Own Photos

  • In your placemark/shape bubble, click on “Rich Text” and click on the picture icon (far right) - you will paste the URL of the image into the pop-up window
  • Find the photo you wish to use in your Flickr account
  • Click on the photo and in the "Actions" drop-down menu select "View all sizes." Click on the link for either the Thumbnail, Small, or Medium image size (these are the sizes we recommend using for a map)
  • Put your cursor over the image and right click (or Ctrl-click on a Mac) and select "Copy Image Location"  (or "Properties" on a Mac). On a Mac, you will need to then copy the URL address from the "Properties" box.
  • Paste the entire URL into the pop-up window from your map and click OK.
  • The image will appear in your placemark/shape bubble and you can now type a caption (or any other information) below. Be sure to click OK on your bubble when you are done! (You can edit the bubble by clicking on it again.)


 Video 

  • In your placemark/shape bubble, click on “Edit HTML.” This is where you will paste the HTML code for a video to embed it in your map (NOTE: if you are including text in the bubble along with video, do this FIRST in Rich Text mode and then switch to Edit HTML to add your video)
  • Find the video you would like to embed on YouTube (you can seach for any video you like, or you can browse the QUEST videos on You Tube)
  • To the right of the video you will see codes for the URL and Embed - copy the entire Embed code (NOTE: click on the Customize button to the right of the Embed code to change the size of the video for your map and uncheck "include related videos" BEFORE you copy the Embed code)
  • Paste the Embed code into your placemark/shape bubble
  • Be sure to click OK on your bubble when you are done! (you can edit the bubble by clicking on it again)
  • You will need to Save your map and click Done in order to check your video in the bubble
  
 

Completing the Map

  • When all of the pinpoints and directional lines have been entered, click “Done.” Now you’re ready to test the map! To make changes, simply click “Edit.” Make sure to save any new changes!
  • View the map by clicking on “View in Google Earth” (optional - you must have Google Earth downloaded to your computer for this to work).
  
 
 

Using the Map: Collaborating, Printing, Emailing, Embedding, etc.

See a sample on the QUEST Explorations Template map
  • To invite others to edit or add to the map, select “Collaborate” and put in the appropriate e-mail addresses and message. This allows others to log into the map with their own e-mail addresses to work on the group map together. NOTE: the email addresses you invite must be email addresses associated with Google Accounts.
  • To print the map, click “Print.” (Note: Please be advised that the program will print whatever map is currently on your screen, so check to make sure your waypoints are visible before printing.)
  • To embed your map in a web page, click "Link" on the top right corner of your map. Copy the embed code and paste it into your web page or blog.
  • To send a link of the map to others, click "Send" on the top right corner of your map. Enter the emails of those to whom you want to send the map, add a message, and click "Send."
  • To link text to the map, click "Link" and copy the URL for the map. Use it for your hyperlink.
  • With the new Embedded KML Viewer  http://tinyurl.com/7jhmdq you can embed Google "my maps" (or an Earth file) directly into Google Sites - nice!
    • In Google Sites, edit the page, choose insert, more, "add by URL" and then use this URL: http://tinyurl.com/8fngtd You'll see it come up in the preview then just choose 2D map or 3D Earth and paste in your "My Maps" URL.

Examples: How are people using maps?

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Jean-Michel Cousteau: Ocean Adventures


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