Whenever I want to find a location, my first stop is Google Maps (http://maps.google.com).
It’s so easy to find a location by searching. If you know the exact address, you can input it — and Google will show you the map with an pointer for that location. Since many cities really don’t enforce a city-wide scale for street numbers, you’ll probably find that the pointer is close, but not quite at the right place.
If you know the street name, the city and state, you can input those — and Google will show you the location. If you know the city, it will show you the map with a lower zoom.
Or, you can start at any point, change the zoom to your choice levels and drag the map within the browser window. That’s right, not only can you use the north, east, south and west buttons to move around, you can also drag the map within the display.
Google Maps sends you more information than is visible in the map. Then, it lets you move in ANY direction by the click-and-drag method. The mouse pointer (which is a hand) changes into a closed fist when you press the left mouse button. Just press and drag!
Google Maps have three basic formats: Map, Satellite and Hybrid. Map is strictly an outline map. Satellite is the same location, but a view from space. The Hybrid view is my favorite; it’s the street view superimposed on the satellite view.
Zooming in the map is easily controlled. You can use the zoom indicators at top left. Or, you can use your mouse’s scroll button.
Here’s a good example of the Hybrid view. We’ll look at Louisiana State University’s Tiger Stadium. The Google maps location, supplied by the “Link to this page” link on the right-hand side of the window, is:
Unfortunately, this happens to be an example of a fine, old computer programming concept called "Garbage In, Garbage Out" — whomever marked the names on the map made a major mistake.
LSU’s Tiger Stadium is the football stadium, bounded by N Stadium Rd, W Stadium Rd, S Stadium Dr and Powerhouse Lane.
Unfortunately, Google’s map has he label LSU Tiger Stadium about 600 feet northwest, which is the Bernie Moore Track Stadium.
I guess it’s the thought that counts…