Think you’d like this? Just open AddressBook, select the address you want, click and hold, and BOOM. A Google map appears in your browser.
Is that cool, or what? Except the new Google Map plugin only works in Firefox, not Safari. And Google Maps doesn’t work in Safari at all.
Let’s do this by the numbers:
1 – Google Maps
Google Maps is a new feature still in beta at the Google site. Click Here for Google Maps. Note that you don’t have to click to zoom in or out. Just use the slider bar on the left of the map screen.
Google Maps works in Firefox, not in Safari. It also works in Mozilla, and Netscape on the Mac, but not in OmniWeb. On a broadband connection, the map rendering is smooth and quick.
2 – Mac Utility for Google Maps
Our friends over at MacOSXHints found a utility that links your AddressBook to the new Google Maps. It’s a simple plugin that lets you select an address in AddressBook, click and hold, then select options: URL to the Google Map, open Google Map in Firefox, get directions to the selected address in Google Map (using Firefox).
Make sure you’ve downloaded and installed Firefox for Mac. While Google Map works in Firefox, Mozilla, and Netscape’s latest browsers, the address utility defaults to Firefox.
The plug in is called GMAP—Google Maps Address Book Plug-Ins. Download, click to install. It’s that simple.
Many utilities require you to move a script or an AppleScript to a specific location. This one does it automagically.
3 – Open AddressBook, Select Address
This is the fun part. Once you’ve installed the GMAP plug-in, open AddressBook. Make sure that your address is the base address for AddressBook. Google Maps needs to know which address to link from.
Move your mouse over Home in the selected address. Click. You’ll notice a small context dialog screen pops up. Make a selection. That will open Firefox, which goes to the Google Map, which opens the address you selected.
4 – Step Four: Finish (there is no Step 4)
So far as I can tell, Google Map only does the US, but it did work fine on Hawaii addresses (we’re in the US, use dollars, and always have better weather than Minnesota**).
Of course, you can also enter addresses into Google Map the old fashioned way; by hand, as in manual labor. I like the single click method myself.
This little utility script gains the Best Utility of the Week Award. There’s no prize, just the recognition to a few smart Mac folks who know what they did (couldn’t find their names anywhere).
Thanks to MacOSXHints for providing such cool Mac hints.
MacOSXHints is loaded with little utilities like this one. Many are AppleScripts that perform functions not in Mac OS X, or any of the built-in applications. Find a need and fill it. That’s what Mac folks do.
As of February 25, 2005, the Google Maps feature works OK with Safari. I just tried it. Pretty slick.
**Minnesota: Nevin Linn of pMachineHosting says there’s four seasons in Minnesota.
1 – Snow
2 – More Snow
3 – Still Snowing
4 – Road Construction
Here? We don’t go outside if the daytime temperature drops below 70-degrees. Brrr.