Google continues to expand its third version of the maps API to include features already in the second version. Most recently, they've added driving directions, which gives programmatic access to the routing data between two points. As with the rest of Maps V3, which was released in May, the team took a fresh approach, so some interfaces have changed.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) last week ran a competition that involved identifying the location of 10 fixed red balloons throughout the United States. It was an exercise designed to see how people can self-organize on the Internet and how information disseminates through social and viral networks. It was won by MIT, taking just 9 hours to find 10 red balloons placed all over the United States.
Last week, online mapping platform Mapbox announced the launch of Smart Directions, a premium addition to its core offering which allows organizations and developers to incorporate maps into their applications. With Smart Directions, companies and developers are given the ability to create custom routing profiles which enable them to describe how users should be taken from their starting points to their destinations.