University Web Developers

University Web Developers

I'm currently looking for a developer to create a customized Google map for our school.  I'm wondering if anyone has any experience in outsourcing this type of project.

  • What should I be looking for in a Google maps developer?
  • How important is experience in this type of development?

We have no programmers on staff, so we outsource about 95% of this type of work.  All of the developers we work with are showing interest in this project, but none have very concrete examples of the work they've done with the Google maps API.

 

Any thoughts on how to go about finding the right developer for this job would be much appreciated. 

 

(Inquiries about the work are welcome too.)

 

Thanks,


Steve Shanahan
Web Services Administrator
Point Park University
sshanahan@pointpark.edu

 

Views: 234

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Depending on the requirements, the most simple way is to use a picture overlay. This is something you could do in-house quite easily.

http://code.google.com/apis/maps/documentation/javascript/v2/exampl...

 

I'd like to hear what you want the finished project to be.

Hi Ryan, thank you for the response.  We're looking for the campus map to be pretty interactive, with overlays and info windows for each of our buildings.  We'd also like to highlight other campus features like parking, shuttle stops, and wifi-hotspots. 

Nothing too complex then, from the Google Maps API perspective. Either picture/polygon overlays with infowindows.

 

Anyone with a basic understanding of the Maps API and javascript could get it done. If you all had the info ready (images/polygons to overlay, lattitude/longitude info for each, data for each location) it wouldn't take longer than a week for me to get it all working and fine-tuned. And I've never used the google maps API before. It's fairly simple to figure out.

 

Go here and check out the Overlays section. Specifically, the Polygon-Arrays and the Infowindow.

Hi Steve,

 

Just make sure they are using the Maps API V3. This offers some improved features and mobile enhancements.

I'm actually working on moving our legacy map over to Google Maps API V3 with custom layers for parking, the ability to search buildings and some other handy features. You can see the legacy map here - http://queensu.ca/campusmap/

The Google Map version should be out before summer. If you have any questions give me a shout, I do consulting work part-time as well.

 

Thanks,

Steven Leggett

steve@wavepointmedia.com

Twitter: @leggettsteven

Hi Steve - depending on how fancy and detailed you want the map to be, you don't necessarily need a developer. I have no such skills, but very easily made the customized map (showing UNC projects in the African country of Malawi) that's embedded in the following webpage: http://www.unc.edu/spotlight/Malawi

 

If you can cut and paste, you can make a customized Google Map. There are good instructions in the G Maps help section.

 

The main time/effort commitment is cat-herding all the info (writing text descriptions of buildings; finding pix/videos to embed in the icon pop ups; etc) that will go on the map -- and I imagine outsourcing that part of the project would be ineffective and very expensive. If you do opt to outsource the end-map production, make sure you have all your content and meta data squared away first. You'll also need a good idea of how much content will be on the final map (number of placemarkers; amount of embedded content etc) for a developer to give you an accurate quote.

 

In summary, making the map was a learning curve, but a pretty shallow one. Happy to share additional lessons learned etc if you're interested.

 

Regards, Patric Lane

Health and Science editor, UNC-Chapel Hill

@patriclane

 

Hi Patric,

 

Well the original poster was requesting someone with maps API experience. Using the default tools from My Maps on Google allows you to create a basic map as you suggested on your linked page but this is not using the maps API and also an iFrame. This works perfectly well for certain applications. However, if this is something like your institutions main campus map I highly suggest getting a professional developer for this. A developer can add new functionality, like selectable overlays (such as parking and emergency features), the ability to search things like building codes, having multiple campuses and much more. If it's simply a small business location map then using the My Maps works perfectly fine.

 

I do agree that there is a huge amount of time involved in data collection from your institution and no outside party should do this in my opinion. Someone that has internal contacts and institutional knowledge would be best. Otherwise there will be many corrections and things missed. We collected ours in an Excel file which was then ported into XML and now I've moved it into a MySQL database getting ready for the new Google version.

Good points, Steven - and I'm glad it's not just me who found the data collection takes a big chunk of time. I look forward to seeing your Queens map once it's done - please let me know when it's up. Regards, Patric

Steve,

 

All good answers previous to mine.  Here are my two cents...

 

First, I have a similar need for our campus. Even though we have the programming talent, they're just not available at this time. So, the students have taken it into their own hands. In this case it will be a software engineering II class building it as a fictitious development company. I have been asked to represent the client for the project.  I can keep you posted as to the outcome and if there are any portability options.

 

Second, I am new to the academic arena, 5 months ago I was in the commercial world having founded a web design and app dev firm called Coco Design 16 years ago. Coco has done Google API maps as well as Flash amusement park maps.  I can get you more details if interested.  However, as you have read in other replys, there is a good amount of work in content collection. Don't leave that to a dev firm, it will drive your costs up.  Collect, write and aggregate your data and you may even want to wireframe what you want to archive.  It will speed the process and minimize rework providing for a better outcome.

 

Hope you find this helpful.

Jay

 

Best of luck in whatever path you choose and please post the map link here when complete.

 

 

RSS

Elsewhere

Latest Activity

Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"It's important to understand the science behind your web pages to better engage and ultimately attract prospective students to your site. http://bit.ly/2ZYK8FZ"
Thursday
Linda Faciana commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"If you’re struggling with web challenges such as accessibility, SEO, design consistency, workflow, content governance, or how to start a website redesign, you’re not alone. Join our next webcast to learn how other higher ed institutions…"
Sep 5
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"eQAfy confirms that OU Campus is still the #1 commercial CMS for colleges and universities in the United States. http://bit.ly/2Lir9Mn"
Aug 28
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Here’s an outline of everything you need to know about OCR compliance, including what it is, what your college or university can do to stay compliant, and resources for OCR compliance. #accessibility http://bit.ly/2rcPDgG"
Aug 23
Linda Faciana commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Join us for our next webcast with April Buscher from Montana State University Billings to learn how blind readers and people with hearing impairment view and read your website and how you can make it accessible to them. http://bit.ly/2zhdcIt"
Aug 14
Amanda Lawson joined Lynn Zawie's group
Thumbnail

OmniUpdate

Share your experiences using OmniUpdate CMS
Aug 9
Amanda Lawson posted a photo

Amanda Lawson

Amanda Lawson, Web Content ManagerCommunity College of Allgheny County
Aug 9
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"High schoolers spend more time on their digital devices than they do sleeping, doing homework, or participating in extracurricular activities. So how do you make your message stand out to them? #eexpect http://bit.ly/2MOIIWC"
Aug 8
Linda Faciana commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Want to increase digital engagement with high school juniors and seniors? Join our next webcast with Stephanie Geyer from Ruffalo Noel Levitz as she shares new data from the 2019 E-Expectations Trend Report on email, paid media, and social media…"
Jul 31
Charlie Holder joined DNI's group
Thumbnail

Cascade Server CMS

For folks who use (or are interested in) Hannon Hill's Cascade Server CMS productSee More
Jul 26
Linda Faciana commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Is your website in compliance with the new WCAG 2.1? Join our webcast to learn various accessibility guidelines, what’s new in 2.1, and more! http://bit.ly/2zhdcIt"
Jul 22
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Even though GDPR has been in effect for over a year, many U.S. colleges and universities are still struggling with how best to implement the rules. We’re here to help. http://bit.ly/2YZZtRQ"
Jul 18
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Does your college or university website meet the new WCAG 2.1 accessibility standards? http://bit.ly/2JBXD3s"
Jul 12
Linda Faciana commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Join us for our next webcast with Eric Turner from Mt. San Antonio College, who will share easy steps to make your website GDPR compliant. http://bit.ly/2zhdcIt"
Jul 10
Linda Faciana commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"It is always important to make a good first impression! Join Aaron Blau from Converge Consulting as he covers ways to make your web content attractive to your target audience and create an authentic brand message. http://bit.ly/2zhdcIt"
Jun 19
Jon Shaw posted a discussion

email obfuscation

Anyone using a javascript or php email obfuscation library that is effective for spam defense?See More
Jun 11
Linda Faciana commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Join us for our next webcast with Kelly Bostick from University of Arkansas who will provide some great tips on ways to ensure that all of your digital content is accessible. http://bit.ly/2zhdcIt"
Jun 6
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"Creating and producing website content is just the tip of the iceberg. In our latest white paper, learn how to manage that content to help your website reach its fullest marketing and recruiting potential. http://bit.ly/30WJ0PW"
May 30
Sara Arnold commented on Lynn Zawie's group OmniUpdate
"A college or university website redesign is the most effective and cost-efficient way to attract and recruit new students. Download our ultimate guide to get started on your redesign today! http://bit.ly/30MmcSQ"
May 28
Cody Bryant is now a member of University Web Developers
May 20

UWEBD has been in existence for more than 10 years and is the very best email discussion list on the Internet, in any industry, on any topic

About

© 2019   Created by Mark Greenfield.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service