ProgrammableWeb Takes Photos Of Google's 1959 Code The Road Bus

To celebrate the 10 year anniversary of the Google Maps API, Google has decided to hit the road with a tricked-out 1959 General Motors bus that will take members of the Maps team across the country from San Francisco (the site of Google's annual developer event, Google I/O) to Disney World in Orlando, Florida. Google's launch of the Maps API along with APIs from other companies like Flickr were some of the major inspirations behind the founding of in 2005.

The Maps team also prepared a Web site and a 90 minute animated itinerary and posted it to YouTube.

According to a post on the Google Maps Developer blog:

Code the Road is a road trip across the U.S. to highlight what developers have made possible with the Google Maps APIs. We’re driving our customized 1959 GM tour bus on a 14 stop journey across the U.S. where along the way we’ll meet with developers, bikers, athletes, and even Elmo. We’ll be meeting with some of our youngest fans on Sesame Street to talk about maps and map literacy. And for our final celebration, where better than the place where dreams come true? We’re going to Disney World to share the magic of coding!

So, in an effort to get closer to the action, members of the ProgrammableWeb team decided to stalk the bus as it sat on the corner of 4th and Howard in San Francisco, directly across the street from the Moscone West convention center where Google I/O 2015 is taking place. We took a few pictures to give you a feel for the road trip that lies ahead for the Google Maps developer team.


Google's CodeTheRoad Bus is parked in front of Jillian's Pool Hall which is across the street from the Moscone West convention center, the site of Google I/O 2015.


According to the Google personnel keeping watch over the 1959 CodeTheRoad bus, "this is the oldest vehicle on the road enabled for GPS navigation." Google retrofitted the bus with Android Auto-based gear from Pioneer.


Coders can take a break and park themselves at picnic tables outside the CodeTheRoad bus while spinning Google's custom CodeTheRoad globes which are built right into the surface of the tables.


The lovely Monica who designed the bus inside and out stands proud, ready to talk about all of the attention to detail that she put into her work.

The Google CodeTheRoad bus is adorned with signage and animals including flamingos and raccoons. While ProgrammableWeb was paying a visit, the bus had its first dog coder come through the bus for tips on locating fire-hydrants using the GoogleMaps API. 


Upon registration all Google I/O attendees are outfitted with wristbands that cannot be removed for the duration of the event. No wristband. No entry. Removing them results in their destruction. So, no, you cannot remove them for the purpose of taking a shower. According to the folks that the registration desk, they're waterproof.

Be sure to read the next Mapping article: Daily API RoundUp: Mapsense, BBC, GoSquared Node.js SDK