The Google Maps Data API allows client applications to view, store and update map data in the form of Google Data API feeds using a data model of features (placemarks, lines and shapes) and maps (collections of features). Since it uses this familiar model, this new API makes it easy to build geo applications for specific activities like planning and sharing trips, collaboratively mapping hiking trails, or saving a list of favorite restaurants
Google has a lot of APIs, more than any other company we track. Perhaps as part of adding many APIs, the search giant also has to remove them from time to time. Recently the company has become more liberal in its platform pruning, with at least three separate announcements this year. Most recently Google dropped three more APIs, including the Google Buzz API.
Google will deprecate its Google Maps Data API in January, lending support instead to its popular new Google Fusion Tables API. Both store geographic data and allow developers to access it programmatically. The move to discontinue support of the Maps Data API does not affect the Google Maps API, the third version of which Google sent into production in May.
Earlier this week Google announced a new feature for its Maps Data API (check out our Maps Data API Profile) that will have a significant impact on how developers upload, and subsequently access, geospatial data in the cloud: data can now be uploaded to Google's infrastructure in either KML or CSV format.