Martin Frohlich from Maplandia has just brought his new mapping site to my attention.
There are other sites that let you search for the world’s place names. Some of them even link the result to Google Earth. But none that I have seen do such a thorough and seamless job of using Google Maps and linking to Google Earth. Add to that a whole raft of features and usability functions, and the whole is quite impressive.
First off, there are extra layers on the Google Maps, such as country border outlines. There is also extra context, such as links to neighboring countries and their places. You can search places, or browse locations by country, and in every case there is a Google Map handy. If you drill down to a specific place, there is a link to Google Earth.
One thing I particularly like about it is that appending a country name to the maplandia.com URL gets you there right away. That’s simply the fastest way to get an instant map of, say, Colombia that I know of. Another nice touch is that maplandia goes out of its way to offer you the ability to search its database from other sites.