Google Maps 2010 vs 2016

Google Maps has changed its style of cartography over the past six years as is clearly seen in this article by Justin O’Beirne What happened to Google Maps?. Comparing maps from 2010 to 2016 reveals that Google provided more city names on maps in 2010 to today, and in 2016 it shows more roads. Both are inadequate, though roads without city names is more annoying and less useful. The author links it to changes at Google for mobile users: “Given these trends, it’s likely that Google Maps was optimized for mobile—and this explains some of the changes we observed earlier.”

Directions at DuckDuckGo

DuckDuckGo now offers maps and directions in a very handy, and meta, way to local services. It is described in the DDG blog post  Directions! with an example from the US. This works in Canada (in Toronto), although Apple Maps is not one of the map choices  –  Bing, Google, Here, and OpenStreetMap. Select the service you prefer and carry on. OpenStreetMap doesn’t have a public transit .

In running the query it can help to include directions! ( although not essential). This search feature is mostly for restaurants. It worked for Queen’s Park, the legislature for Ontario, but not for Art Gallery of Ontario.

DuckDuckGo screenshot of search for Paramount restaurant in Toronto

DuckDuckGo shows maps and directions

ntario or Archives of Ontario.  This limitation seemed true in US cities too.


Yahoo drops products

Yahoo announced changes in product offerings while stating that “we continue to focus on our key product pillars: search, communications and digital content”.

Q2 2015 Progress Report On Our Product Prioritization, Yahoo Tumblr (Jun 4 )

  • closing Yahoo Maps site;
  • shutting down some regional properties – Canada loses Yahoo Music, Yahoo TV
  • ending Yahoo Pipes used by developers for mashing together data