Chris Pietschmann

husband, father, hacker, entrepreneur, futurist, innovator, autodidact

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What I've been up to lately: JavaScript, AJAX, Virtual Earth and WebParts

The last couple months at work, I've been working a lot on a new real estate mapping product that was launched last week called eNavigator (Try out eNavigator here). It utilizes AJAX and the Microsoft Virtual Earth v1 Commercial control and supports IE and Firefox. The coolest feature is the Interactive Map search that allows you to click and drag the map around to find that home of your dreams.

Something I started working with tonight is the new Virtual Earth v3 control that Microsoft released on May 23rd. Some of the new features include Geocoding, Driving Directions and built-in Pushpins and Popups.

There is currently a bug in the Virtual Earth v3 API. When you create a map on the page the follow JavaScript error occurs:

Line: 2
Char: 159480
Error: 'footer' is undefined

What's this "footer" it's looking for? I don't see it in the documentation; the error even occurs on the Virtual Earth Interactive SDK site. It's been a couple days already; I wonder how long it will take for them to fix it.

More Info on Virtual Earth:
Virtual Earth Map Control v3 – Great new features!
The Virtual Earth Interactive SDK
ViaVirtualEarth.com

Most programmers hate JavaScript (I used to), but I've actually come to like it. It's takes a bit to get down what works in which browser and what works in all browsers, but once you get a good base of familiarity it's actually quite nice. I think I've crossed that boundary to becoming somewhat of a JavaScript "expert". (I'm not claming to be one, I just think I'm on my way as long as I keep working with it more and more.)

Another thing I've been working with lately is WebParts. They are actually quite easy to use. I especially like how easy it is to use the Import/Export feature of saving/loading a WebPart XML file. They guys on the ASP.NET team did a great job with this feature set.

I've found there really aren't very many articles or code examples out there on using Virtual Earth. So, I plan on blogging more about Virtual Earth in the next few months. Tonight, I actually started working on an ASP.NET Virtual Earth v3 library that I plan on releasing once I get it far enough along. So, look for it's release in the coming weeks.

Enough rambling for now, I should probably get back to programming or go to bed.

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