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Old 09-08-2004, 08:25 PM   #1
aranpura
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World Atlas in PDA-friendly format

My first contribution to this lovely group of PDA-obsessed compatriots...

http://www.ranpura.com/resourceHome.html

I wrote a little perl script to reformat Mapquest's atlas pages (http://www.mapquest.com/atlas/main.adp?region=world) in order to minimize extraneous content for PDAs. You can use any web converter with a link depth of 1 to download the whole atlas (I use iSiloX).

Note that there are over 300 maps in this atlas -- without image compression I think this would require around 70 Mb of space. iSiloX allows me to compress all images down to 25% of their original size, giving me an atlas that weighs in around 10 Mb.

If anyone knows of a better world atlas solution, please do get in touch. Mapquest is the only place I know to get decent looking maps (I have a T3 and no, line drawings aren't good enough!).
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Old 09-08-2004, 08:29 PM   #2
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Very nice one!!

/stick to frontpage
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Old 09-08-2004, 11:43 PM   #3
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I like it a lot! 10 megs is a reasonable amount of space for this much information. That's what memory cards are for! My only request would be to break the links down by region, so that it's easier to browse through. Thanks for this resource.
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Old 09-09-2004, 06:06 AM   #4
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Doesn't work for me in iSiloX 4x. Only one empty page is to be seen.
HowTo?
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Old 09-09-2004, 09:29 AM   #5
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Where is the Perl script? I didn't see it linked on the page you referenced.

Also, if you want to fetch the maps with a spider, you have to point to his real page on .mac, which is:Spider from there, and you should be fine.

Last edited by hacker; 09-09-2004 at 10:14 AM.
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Old 09-09-2004, 01:25 PM   #6
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A useful version in Plucker, with tappable alternate images (600x600 in size), ends up being about 45M in size with 16bpp images. Not too bad, actually.

I'm going to pare that down a bit, because the pages have two images in each, and the second "postage stamp" image is useless on a PDA anyway. Its too small to be useful.

In 4bpp the document should be about 20M with alternate images of the same size.

Grouping the countries by continent would be useful also. He's got each state extrapolated into their own image. Those should be in a "United States" page, and further, "United States" should be encapsulated in a "North America" page.

Looks neat, but unfortunately, not redistributable.
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Old 09-09-2004, 03:33 PM   #7
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Very nice, aranpura! Excellent job. Thank you.
(Note: I also needed hacker's link to the real page to make it work with iSiloX.)
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Old 09-09-2004, 03:54 PM   #8
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Love it. The atlas has its permanent place on my memory stick
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Old 09-09-2004, 06:08 PM   #9
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Who knew we had so many map lovers?!

Sorry about the link cloaking, I'm trying to work out a better system that will keep me relatively independent of .Mac in case I decide not to fork out the subscription fees...

Those who provided the direct link are correct; it will work better in iSilo, Plucker, etc. Once again, that link is:

http://homepage.mac.com/aranpura/atlas/palmIndex.html

Regarding the comments on grouping the maps by region (and grouping the United States map into one category), I may take the time to do this soon. This was a quick and dirty strip-down of the MapQuest index page, which itself isn't organized... now that I know people are interested, I don't mind investing some time in cleaning it up.

Oh, and the little thumbnail "context maps" are as legible on my T3 as they are on my 20" Cinema Display -- just barely big enough to be useful in both cases. In the case of many of the island nations, though, even a tiny, fuzzy picture of global context helps me figure out what part of the Earth I'm looking at. I'll see how much space I can save by getting rid of them, though.

And finally, for hermann4711 and others who are having problems in iSilo... make sure that your link depth is set to 1 and that you've enabled the "follow off-site links" option. I'm guessing your snag is the latter.

What a thrill that this has proven useful!
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Old 09-09-2004, 06:15 PM   #10
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Also, the Perl script...

In respose to Hacker's inquiry, here's the Perl script for creating the atlas pages from the Mapquest main page. You'll have to pass in the Mapquest page as a shell argument (or in my case a stripped down version of that page).

I'm a real novice at Perl, so please have some leniency with my klutsy approach!

--Ash.



#!/usr/bin/perl

#---- read the input file into the wholePage string

$wholePage = "";
while (<>)
{
$wholePage .= $_;
}


#---- extract the region codes from wholePage into an array

@regionCodes = ();

do
{
push(@regionCodes, $1);
}
while $wholePage =~ /region=(.*?)"/g;


#---- write an HTML atlas page for each region code

foreach $region (@regionCodes)
{
$newFilePath = $region . "Atlas.html";
open(hNewFile, "> $newFilePath")
or die "Couldn't open $path for writing: $!\n";

print hNewFile
"<html>
<p><img src=\"http:\/\/cdn\.mapquest\.com\/mqatlasenglish\/$region\"><\/p>
<p><img src=\"http:\/\/cdn\.mapquest\.com\/mqatlaslocators\/$region\"><\/p>
<\/html>";

close(hNewFile);
}
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Old 02-10-2005, 06:08 AM   #11
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This world atlas is great, only I've had problems. I tried spidering it with Plucker Desktop and everything works great - except, the colour thumbnails on my palm link to ugly black-and-white versions. When I read the settings in Plucker, I think that it's a limitation of Plucker: "Reformat converted images which exceed 60kb by reducing [color depth][image dimensions]". So one bad option versus another bad option!

If anyone could help me with this it would be great. Alternatively, it would be even better if someone could just e-mail me the compiled version of this world map thing, for Plucker or any other viewer that works for a low-res 160-160 colour m515 :-) My e-mail's geoffreynz at the yahoo dot com domain.

Thanks in advance!

Geoffrey
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Old 02-10-2005, 09:19 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aranpura
In respose to Hacker's inquiry, here's the Perl script for creating the atlas pages from the Mapquest main page. You'll have to pass in the Mapquest page as a shell argument (or in my case a stripped down version of that page).
I don't know what your source file looks like, but here's a cleaned-up version of your Perl, based on knowing very little about what exactly you're doing with it (arg, looks like there are some bugs in the way MR renders code blocks, so this is going to look very disjointed):
PHP Code:
    use strict# ALWAYS use strict
                 
use CGI qw(:html4); # Output HTML cleanly
                 
use File::Slurp# Suck in the file from disk
                 
my $cgi CGI->new(); # Create CGI.pm object
               
                 
my ($wholePage, @regionCodes);
                 
my $page read_file('that_page');
               
                 do {
               
push( @regionCodes, $);
                 } while 
$wholePage =~ /region=(.*?)/g;
               
                 foreach 
my $region (@regionCodes) {
                         
my $path $region "Atlas.html";
                         
openhNewFile"> $path)
                           or die 
"Couldn't open $path for writing: $!\n";
               
                         
my $data =
                           
$cgi->start_html( -title => "$region),
                           
$cgi->p(
              
$cgi->img({-src =>"http://cdn.mapquest.com/mqatlasenglish/$region"}),
              
$cgi->img({-src =>"http://cdn.mapquest.com/mqatlaslocators/$region"}),
                           ),
                           
$cgi->end_html;
               
                         
# Give the user some progress feedback
                         
print "Outputting $region to $path\n";
                         print 
hNewFile $data;
                         
close(hNewFile);
                 } 
The rest is up to you.
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Old 02-10-2005, 10:13 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hacker
I don't know what your source file looks like...
I found the version from MapQuest that you're using, and have written a spider that does all of what your script does in one shot, including fetching the pages and images. It seems to work well.

I'm working on a cleaned-up version of this, split into regions (Africa, Asia, Australia, etc.). When I have something that works a little more robustly, I'll attach it to this thread.
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