Monday, October 18, 2010

KML overlay support

Tonight I implemented KML overlay support in aprs.fi, which have been requested by some users. You can now place any KML file on top of the real-time map, which opens up a great number of possible applications and mash-ups. The feature is used by adding a 'kml' URL parameter to any real-time map view. Please note that the URL must be encoded properly (/ becomes %2F, : becomes %3A).

For example, here's a simple polygon example made by Google, the Pentagon with a Pentagon-shaped overlay: http://aprs.fi/?lat=38.8720&lng=-77.0570&z=15&kml=http%3A%2F%2Fhe.fi%2Fmisc%2Fpentagon.kml (see the KML file: pentagon.kml)

Here's a KMZ file generated by the Export tool of aprs.fi, stored on another server and overlaid back to aprs.fi: http://aprs.fi/?kml=http%3A%2F%2Fhe.fi%2Fmisc%2Ftest.kmz&lat=60.2326&lng=24.8364&z=12

An external KML file can be used to highlight areas of interest (such as SAR search areas), projecting high-altitude balloon track forecasts, and displaying live data generated by other web services with KML output features. The opportunities should generate lots of fun.

2 comments:

Bobby said...

Great feature! Will we have the option of embedding a geo file?

oh7lzb said...

Bobby: Thanks.

What kind of geo file, there seem to be multiple kinds of them (findu, some geocaching stuff, etc)? Very unlikely, though, unless the Google Maps API supports it directly.