MSN Launches Virtual Earth

Things I like so far:

  • Dynamic searches as you move around the map.  For example, I can search for "Starbucks", and as I move around the map it dynamically scopes the query to the area which is visible.
  • Hybrid street name/aerial view.
  • Ability to have multiple searches at any time

What I don't like:

  • I made the mistake of installing the "locate me" helper application.  Apparently this guy only works with Wireless connections, and since I am on my wired connection here in my office, it doesn't work properly.  I can't seem to figure out how to disable it though and just do a regular IP lookup.  I think the app should be smart enough to realize though that a wireless connection is not available and fall back to IP lookup on its own. (Update: As Mattew pointed out in the comment, it seems that my experience has been less than optimal here in that both the Locator tool and IP-based lookup are failing... in fact it does do exactly what I want to do).
  • The mouse scroll for zooming in and out is awesome, but I think it could be a bit smoother. 

Comments (4)

  1. Matthew Cheung says:

    The Location Finder will always fall back to Reverse IP if it cannot find your position using visible wireless networks. However, it is possible that your specific IP isn’t locatable to a high enough confidence factor. As a result, even when the Location Finder does fall back to reverse IP, you may still not be located.

    Installation of the location finder will not negatively affect the experience or disable normal reverse IP.

  2. Check out the video of the Virtual Earth team over on Channel 9:

  3. Matthew: Yeah I notice that is the behavior after moving to another machine altogether. Good stuff!

  4. pinakbet says:

    it’s generally okay. one thing though, when i tried to pan horizontally to the left beyond hawaii, i can’t do it.

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