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October 31, 2007

Introducing the New Ask Maps UK

Our goal: to get more people to use Ask UK's Maps service. Our solution: introduce a new version, with new features. Now, thanks to a joint effort across several Ask.com offices, we've succeeded in delivering an Ask Maps service well worth talking about, with features that we think will have you coming back for more.

Bringing the US Along for the Ride

When you work with teams that cross boundaries, it’s often little details that take the longest to get right. In the UK, when you come off a motorway, you call it a "junction;" in the US you call it an "exit." And when it comes to prioritizing landmarks like museums and other points of interest in our search results, we worked closely with our US development team to advise them as to the more popular UK sites.

In addition to the new features, we've extended Ask Maps to cover the UK and Ireland. So if you're planning an Autumn trip around the British Isles, make sure you give it a go.

Driving You Sane

You can give our new driving directions up to ten different destinations and it will plot a route between them.

Getting There On Foot

If you are more of the urban walking persuasion, try the walking directions. Just tell it where you want to go and it'll show you how to get from A to B.

(BTW, Google/Yahoo!/MSN Live Maps do not provide walking directions. Nice!)

Landmark Assistance

Our UK map plots not only streets, but several thousand points of interest. Ask UK Maps cover museums (try the National Gallery), historic buildings (go for the Tower of London), parks (a stroll in Regent's Park, perhaps?) and many others.

Tube Vision

If walking through London is wearing you out, take the underground! The tube stations are marked on our maps (they are the little red circles with a blue line across them).

Get a Birds-Eye Perspective With Aerial View

If you want to know what things look like before you even get there, use the satellite imagery. Just click on the "Aerial" link and zoom right in. If you like the picture a lot, you can even buy it! Just click on the "BuyPoster" link.

And remember, you can also bookmark a map view that you like, email it to a friend or print the driving directions. Click on the options on the top right-hand side of the map.

UK Maps, Smarter Than Ever

Now you can start your city searches right from the Ask UK home page. Type in the name of any major UK city on our web search, and you will get a Smart Answer with not only a link to the map, but a whole lot of other information, like links to local travel traffic information, tourist advice and virtual tour.

When you have a project team spread over four or five different geographical locations and several time zones--on a product with very specific local quirks--it's quite a challenge. But the team worked hard to make it happen, and on time too!

--Koji Kawano and Daniel Mermelstein
International Product Management
Ask UK

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Tracked on Oct 31, 2007 8:08:00 AM


Oh yes, I'd like to congratulate you on your maps.

I've never used Ask.com before seriously, aside from just testing out one or two things; but that was until I found your maps had walking directions.

For me, someone who doesn't own a car and travels mostly by foot or public transport, this was a really nice feature - and one that works well.

So congratulations; you've done good with this maps malarky and I'll be using your map service from hereonin.

One thing I would like to see, but this would be a harrowingly long and tedious job, is to see a mapping system that recognises subways and narrow paths. This route suggested by Ask, for example, would be much quicker if you nipped under the subway.

Posted by: coxy | Oct 31, 2007 8:26:06 AM

Finally, someone realizes that life does not center around the USA - congrats

Posted by: * Miss Universe | Oct 31, 2007 11:31:24 AM

Nice Update for the UK.
Localizing works however the UK still works on mph not kph.
(do a directions and move the markers and they show the road in kph.)

Keep the updates coming and change the park fill - is ugly and not very cartographic.


Posted by: Mapperz | Nov 12, 2007 7:57:19 AM

And remember, you can also bookmark a map view that you like, email it to a friend or print the driving directions. Click on the options on the top right-hand side of the map.

Posted by: ink miami tattoo | Nov 16, 2007 8:11:38 AM

Oh yes, I'd like to congratulate you on your maps.

Posted by: Pars | Dec 28, 2007 2:11:07 AM

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Opinions expressed here and in any corresponding comments are the personal opinions of the original authors, not of IAC Search & Media and may not have been reviewed in advance.

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