KML and GeoRSS Support Added to the Google Maps API

The Google Maps API blog had what I think was a big announcement this past Wednesday. The Google Maps API will now support both KML and GeoRSS.

The long-standing problem with the Google Maps API was that you could only add your features programatically. Each individual feature would have to be added through the Google Maps Javascript. Not only was it a pain to write some looping server-side code to handle that, it meant that you would have to handle your data twice – once for Google Maps and Google Earth (KML), and then again for the Google Maps API.

This problem, fortunately, has been completely addressed. Now adding KML data to your Google Maps mashup is as easy as:

var gx = new GGeoXml(“http://your.url.com/your.kml”);
map.addOverlay(gx);
That’s a huge usability improvement. It also lets you drop KML from other web sites directly in to your mashup – all you need is the URL. They also recognized the emergence of GeoRSS as another open GIS XML standard, and added the ability to add GeoRSS feeds to your mashup as well.

This is big. Big big. So big I may even click on an ad-sense add on the Google search page to kick those folks an extra nickel. Well, probably not. But I’m seriously considering letting some of those adds get by AdBlock. Well, probably not. Kudos to Google nonetheless.

Of course, this would happen right after I make a post lamenting the lack of KML support in the Google Maps API, rendering my five day old post out of data. Sigh. I’ve updated Part I of my Google Maps series to reflect the changes.