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  • Mapping LTH

    Post #1 - March 2nd, 2007, 5:44 pm
    Post #1 - March 2nd, 2007, 5:44 pm Post #1 - March 2nd, 2007, 5:44 pm
    Wow, this is pretty neat.

    I just realized that Google Maps lets you search relative to web sites, so you can see a map of any addresses Google has isolated in LTH posts, for any city.

    It's a little cranky. It seems to work best by searching for a city (e.g. Berkeley, CA) and then using "search nearby" with simply the string "site:lthforum.com" (resulting Berkeley Map)

    As I try a few variations, I'm not always getting the kinds of results I expected, but I will definitely need to try this next time I'm travelling... and I think one reason this works well is the habit many LTHers have of putting complete address information in a simple regular block in a post, just the kind of thing that is real easy for Google to recognize -- so hopefully people will continue to adopt that practice...
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #2 - March 5th, 2007, 3:13 pm
    Post #2 - March 5th, 2007, 3:13 pm Post #2 - March 5th, 2007, 3:13 pm
    That is neat! I've been playing around with this feature and it seems to yield decent results if you search for a zip code (e.g., 60637 ) or address (e.g., 400 S Michigan, Chicago and add "site:lthforum.com" as well.
  • Post #3 - March 5th, 2007, 5:34 pm
    Post #3 - March 5th, 2007, 5:34 pm Post #3 - March 5th, 2007, 5:34 pm
    What a wonderful tip. Thanks so much!
  • Post #4 - April 5th, 2007, 8:30 pm
    Post #4 - April 5th, 2007, 8:30 pm Post #4 - April 5th, 2007, 8:30 pm
    Hey, Google now allows you to create, save and share maps with a web interface -- this could be a great resource for a lot of LTH threads...
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #5 - April 5th, 2007, 8:55 pm
    Post #5 - April 5th, 2007, 8:55 pm Post #5 - April 5th, 2007, 8:55 pm
    Yeah, I noticed that too, and my first thought was an LTH-driven map.

    Does it allow multiple people to edit the same map?
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #6 - April 5th, 2007, 9:07 pm
    Post #6 - April 5th, 2007, 9:07 pm Post #6 - April 5th, 2007, 9:07 pm
    gleam wrote:Does it allow multiple people to edit the same map?


    So far, it appears not.

    I started on a GNR map, even though the one on EatChicago.net is already here.

    This service definitely can use some work, in terms of sharing, but I do still think it has some promise... It will be interesting to see how user contributed information starts turning up on maps.

    (Oh yeah, speaking of GNRs -- is it true that the two La Oaxaqueñas are related? This "official" web site only mentions the Diversey location. You'd think they'd make the connection clear if there was one. Maybe a sale since the GNR?)
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #7 - April 5th, 2007, 10:29 pm
    Post #7 - April 5th, 2007, 10:29 pm Post #7 - April 5th, 2007, 10:29 pm
    I don't even know what that means -- search relative to websites. Can someone elucidate? How does adding "lthforum.com" to a map search get you better results?
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

    http://midwestmaize.wordpress.com
  • Post #8 - April 5th, 2007, 11:27 pm
    Post #8 - April 5th, 2007, 11:27 pm Post #8 - April 5th, 2007, 11:27 pm
    Cynthia wrote:I don't even know what that means -- search relative to websites. Can someone elucidate? How does adding "lthforum.com" to a map search get you better results?


    I've used it a couple of times to find restaurants near someplace else I'll be. It's not the only way to do it, but ultimately, LTH is the best source for food opinions, so even if other sites (Chicago Reader RRR, Metromix, Yelp) provide "search for places near X", if I used that, I'd just end up searching for LTH opinions on places. Doing this can save a step -- it's far from perfect, since it only finds threads where people have included addresses -- but it works OK.

    Say, for example, I have clients in the office and I want to find a place we can go for dinner that's within walking distance of my office. I search for my office on Google Maps, then in the "bubble" for the office,I click on "search near here" and I get a pretty good map of places nearby that have been discussed on the board. (Notice that you can page through the results and see even more places.)

    Or extramsg is coming to Chicago and was wondering about places to eat near the hotel where he's staying. This techique can be used for one "view" of what LTHers have had to say about nearby places....

    Just a couple of examples.
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #9 - April 7th, 2007, 11:19 am
    Post #9 - April 7th, 2007, 11:19 am Post #9 - April 7th, 2007, 11:19 am
    Cool. I'll have to check out Google maps. Thanks.
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

    http://midwestmaize.wordpress.com
  • Post #10 - April 7th, 2007, 11:27 am
    Post #10 - April 7th, 2007, 11:27 am Post #10 - April 7th, 2007, 11:27 am
    Just tried it out. What a remarkably useful ability to have at one's disposal! Thanks again.
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

    http://midwestmaize.wordpress.com
  • Post #11 - April 9th, 2007, 9:28 am
    Post #11 - April 9th, 2007, 9:28 am Post #11 - April 9th, 2007, 9:28 am
    Wow. That is a great function!
  • Post #12 - April 22nd, 2007, 2:40 pm
    Post #12 - April 22nd, 2007, 2:40 pm Post #12 - April 22nd, 2007, 2:40 pm
    germuska wrote:I started on a GNR map, even though the one on EatChicago.net is already here.


    So, here's an example of how to make use of this map (still not a complete accounting of GNRs because it is very tedious to enter them manually. Too bad Google doesn't have a bulk import process...)

    1. Go to the LTJH GNR "My Maps" Map
    2. In the "Search the Map" box, enter an address, say of someplace you are going.
    3. The points on the map you loaded will be visible as an overlay on your search results. You may need to zoom out if your initial search isn't that close to any GNRs.

    Try searching for GNRs near your office, or your Grandma's house, or...

    The utility is pretty obvious, and in some ways it's more reliable than the method originally mentioned in this thread because the locations are directly entered; the first method depends on Google identifying addresses in a thread, which of course, depends on people entering complete address information -- I wouldn't bet that Google infers "Chicago", for example, when people only list a street address, although maybe over time it will get smarter.

    Perhaps some of our enthusiastic travel documentarians will try making maps to go along with their travelogues, but again, it's not the zippiest process... If I ever finish the GNRs, I think I'll try making a map of the North Clark-a-thon locations.
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #13 - April 22nd, 2007, 3:03 pm
    Post #13 - April 22nd, 2007, 3:03 pm Post #13 - April 22nd, 2007, 3:03 pm
    Thanks, germuska. I have actually had a couple of opportunities to benefit from your work. While I'm certain that even the city dwellers appreciate what you've done, for those of us who live a little farther out, it's almost vital to have this kind of info. I feel like the world of Chicago dining has become more accessible. I'm sorry it's tedious, but it is definitely appreciated.
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

    http://midwestmaize.wordpress.com
  • Post #14 - April 25th, 2007, 11:16 pm
    Post #14 - April 25th, 2007, 11:16 pm Post #14 - April 25th, 2007, 11:16 pm
    germuska wrote:If I ever finish the GNRs...

    There, that's done.

    germuska wrote:...I think I'll try making a map of the North Clark-a-thon locations.

    I'm fooling around a bit with a personal map of places I've noted (often here on LTH) that I might try to check out when I'm travelling. It's just a random beginning based on miscellaneous bookmarks and such...

    Has anyone else tried this out? It could make a great accompaniment to some of the long travelogues we get, although those are enough work as it is!
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #15 - May 21st, 2007, 10:26 pm
    Post #15 - May 21st, 2007, 10:26 pm Post #15 - May 21st, 2007, 10:26 pm
    germuska wrote:Has anyone else tried this out? It could make a great accompaniment to some of the long travelogues we get, although those are enough work as it is!


    I mentioned this in another thread, but in the interest of consolidating things for future searches, etc, I made a map of LTH Discussions of Las Vegas and Phoenix

    It started as a map of Ronnie's trip to those two places, but then I decided to try to broaden it to include the places well covered in this Las Vegas thread also. I haven't kept up, perhaps in part because Las Vegas isn't someplace in which I'm all that interested -- but Ronnie's thread came up at the right time! I think it's pretty close to complete coverage of the two threads. Note that I tried to link to the specific LTH posts in the little "bubbles" for each spot.
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #16 - May 22nd, 2007, 9:33 am
    Post #16 - May 22nd, 2007, 9:33 am Post #16 - May 22nd, 2007, 9:33 am
    It looks like it is pretty simple to make a Garmin GPS compatible POI (points of interest) file from germuska's GNR map.

    If I am successful at doing this, let me know if anyone would like a copy of the file for loading into their Garmin GPS unit. I'll also probably be able to provide instructions once I have figured it all out.
  • Post #17 - September 1st, 2007, 11:00 am
    Post #17 - September 1st, 2007, 11:00 am Post #17 - September 1st, 2007, 11:00 am
    Some people may get a kick out of my recent discovery.

    Image
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #18 - October 19th, 2007, 4:26 pm
    Post #18 - October 19th, 2007, 4:26 pm Post #18 - October 19th, 2007, 4:26 pm
    MKHesq wrote:It looks like it is pretty simple to make a Garmin GPS compatible POI (points of interest) file from germuska's GNR map.

    If I am successful at doing this, let me know if anyone would like a copy of the file for loading into their Garmin GPS unit. I'll also probably be able to provide instructions once I have figured it all out.


    Yes, this would be great. How do you make one, or how can you most easily share the file you've already made?

    Thanks!
  • Post #19 - November 4th, 2007, 2:32 pm
    Post #19 - November 4th, 2007, 2:32 pm Post #19 - November 4th, 2007, 2:32 pm
    Using Joe's GNR Google map, I have created a Points of Interest (POI) file for my TomTom mobile GPS.

    With it, I can show which of 92 GNRs are near my present location, or I can get directions to a particular GNR. As an additional feature, the POI file, as I've built it, displays the first line of the street address and the phone number when I select a GNR from the display on the screen, e.g., "Johnnie's Beef (7500 W. North Ave) (+1 708-452-6000)" --and that's handy for telling someone else who doesn't have a GPS.

    Post or PM me if you are interested in trying out a copy of it. I'm also curious as to how many are interested in a version for other GPS systems, too, so feel free to PM me with info on what make/model you are using.

    --Matt "Better dining through electronics" LaSaine
    "If I have dined better than other men, it is because I stood on the shoulders of giants...and got the waiter's attention." --Sir Isaac "Ready to order NOW" Newton

    "You worry too much. Eat some bacon... What? No, I got no idea if it'll make you feel better, I just made too much bacon." --Justin Halpern's dad
  • Post #20 - November 29th, 2007, 8:56 am
    Post #20 - November 29th, 2007, 8:56 am Post #20 - November 29th, 2007, 8:56 am
    gleam wrote:Does it allow multiple people to edit the same map?


    Just today I noticed a "collaborate" link in the corner when I was editing a google map. Looks like you can invite a number of people, and in so doing, optionally give them the power to invite more.

    If anyone is interested in collaborating on the maps I've started (or starting new ones to map LTH threads), let me know. Once a map is started, it's not too hard to add a point at a time, depending on how much you want to add to the default Google "record." (I usually like to add a link back to the LTH post or other reference.) Bulk entry is fairly laborious, but can be a better way to pass the time than playing solitaire :)

    G-Maps seems to get kind of sluggish with maps with a lot of points of interest, so it probably makes sense to organize them roughly by city. It might be fun to try to integrate them with the "city indexes" we have starting up for KC, Pittsburgh, Northwest Indiana... and I know there's a ton of great LA posts, especially from Erik M, that don't otherwise have an index. I've also thought it might be cool to map out some of the threads in the vein of "places along I-55"

    Here are existing restaurant maps I've created, all of which have probably been mentioned above in this thread...
    LTH Forum Great Neighborhood Restaurants
    Pizzaland: Pizzaland: PIGMON's Pizza Quest in New Jersey (derived from this thread)
    LTH Threads on Las Vegas and Phoenix (from these threads[1][2])
    Chicago to DC with LTH as my Travel Agent (I'm pretty sure I didn't finish this one, or maybe it turned out that there were less points of interest explicitly mentioned in the thread than I'd thought when I started.)
    My own eclectic list of places I might want to check out based on LTH discussions, stuff I read about or see on TV, etc.
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #21 - November 29th, 2007, 9:42 am
    Post #21 - November 29th, 2007, 9:42 am Post #21 - November 29th, 2007, 9:42 am
    OOh! Cool! I stole your idea for the map I made, Joe - so anybody who wants to collaborate on the U-Pick Map and Thread List feel free to PM me.
  • Post #22 - March 5th, 2008, 8:01 pm
    Post #22 - March 5th, 2008, 8:01 pm Post #22 - March 5th, 2008, 8:01 pm
    MKHesq wrote:It looks like it is pretty simple to make a Garmin GPS compatible POI (points of interest) file from germuska's GNR map.

    If I am successful at doing this, let me know if anyone would like a copy of the file for loading into their Garmin GPS unit. I'll also probably be able to provide instructions once I have figured it all out.


    The easiest way I've found to do this using TakItWithme. All you need to do is paste in germuska's Google Maps url and download the GPX file. Load it into your Garmin POI loader and you're done.

    Works fantastically well.
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #23 - November 5th, 2008, 4:18 pm
    Post #23 - November 5th, 2008, 4:18 pm Post #23 - November 5th, 2008, 4:18 pm
    I have updated the GNR Google Map to reflect the new winners.

    I also exported the KML file and put it in a place with a shorter, more memorable URL. Entering this into the "search" field on an iPhone's "Maps" application is handy in someways. It comes up wanting in other ways, but it's there if you want it:

    http://lthforum.com/gnrmap.kml

    Specifically, the shortcomings are that the iPhone maps application doesn't display any of the text or links which are part of each placemark (even though they appear in Google Earth desktop -- haven't installed the Google Earth iPhone app yet.)

    As always, this is a fairly manual process, so if people find any mistakes, please let me know.
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #24 - November 5th, 2008, 9:18 pm
    Post #24 - November 5th, 2008, 9:18 pm Post #24 - November 5th, 2008, 9:18 pm
    I've created a GPX file (POI file for Garmin GPS units) based off Joe's map and uploaded it here:

    http://debacle.org/LTH_GNR.gpx

    Just download it and load it into your Garmin POI Loader, and it'll do the rest.
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #25 - January 7th, 2009, 10:23 am
    Post #25 - January 7th, 2009, 10:23 am Post #25 - January 7th, 2009, 10:23 am
    How does one go about creating a Google Map with multiple locations on it? I have an only-partially-related-to-food need to do this--we are going out to Rochelle for antiquing (and lunch) tomorrow, and there are several antique-store and restaurant destinations out that way that I'd like to put on one Google map. I know how to do one location on a map, but not several on the same map. Instructions most appreciated; thanks in advance.
  • Post #26 - January 7th, 2009, 10:29 am
    Post #26 - January 7th, 2009, 10:29 am Post #26 - January 7th, 2009, 10:29 am
    I'm pretty sure you need to start with a Google account. After you've created an account or signed in, go to Google maps and look at the menu on the left column. Click "My Maps." Click "Create a Map," and give your new map a title. Now, type in an address on the search bar - the easiest way is to wait until Google brings up a marker on your map, at the bottom of which there is a link "Save to my maps." Follow the instructions, repeat with your other addresses.
  • Post #27 - January 7th, 2009, 10:32 am
    Post #27 - January 7th, 2009, 10:32 am Post #27 - January 7th, 2009, 10:32 am
    Thanks, Michele. I do have a Google account, so I've got a leg up there. I will try this later. I bet it works!
  • Post #28 - January 7th, 2009, 10:33 am
    Post #28 - January 7th, 2009, 10:33 am Post #28 - January 7th, 2009, 10:33 am
    If you're doing driving directions, you can just click "add a destination", as well.
  • Post #29 - January 7th, 2009, 10:37 am
    Post #29 - January 7th, 2009, 10:37 am Post #29 - January 7th, 2009, 10:37 am
    Ah. May try that, too. Thanks Llama. I don't need driving directions, but I can disregard those and just print out the map that results.
  • Post #30 - January 7th, 2009, 11:16 am
    Post #30 - January 7th, 2009, 11:16 am Post #30 - January 7th, 2009, 11:16 am
    germuska wrote:
    germuska wrote:I started on a GNR map, even though the one on EatChicago.net is already here.


    So, here's an example of how to make use of this map (still not a complete accounting of GNRs because it is very tedious to enter them manually. Too bad Google doesn't have a bulk import process...)

    1. Go to the LTJH GNR "My Maps" Map
    2. In the "Search the Map" box, enter an address, say of someplace you are going.
    3. The points on the map you loaded will be visible as an overlay on your search results. You may need to zoom out if your initial search isn't that close to any GNRs.

    Try searching for GNRs near your office, or your Grandma's house, or...


    This is pretty cool, BUT...

    It clearly shoes how city of Chicago-centric the list (and this site) is. It's one fo the big reasons for my frustration with other food sites I've found.

    Being in the FAR NW suburbs, the nearest blip on the map to me is 22 miles away. I only see a handful of places even outside the I294 corridor.

    What would I have to do to get more places out in the 'burbs shown on this map?

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