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Your GIS News Source · Friday, November 14, 2003

SPECIAL ISSUE - MapPoint 2004 - Technology and Applications

MapPoint 2004
A Special Issue on the Applications, Technology, and Partners of Microsoft MapPoint

The desktop mapping market welcomed a new entry in 1998 with the arrival of Microsoft MapPoint 2000. Directions Magazine believed that it represented a radical shift in ease of use with a very low price point. So we created a "spin-off" publication called MP2Kmag. Here, now, we present the technology and applications associated with the latest version of the product, MapPoint 2004. In addition, we are providing a section on the group of worldwide partners that Microsoft has recruited to develop on the MapPoint platform. Microsoft enticed the partners because MapPoint takes advantage of the component object model (COM) architecture. As MapPoint migrates to a .NET environment, unique applications for wireless and Web services are emerging. We are pleased to present you with this issue to keep you apprised of the latest developments.

Thanks for reading Directions Magazine, and be sure to tell a friend!

Joe Francica, Editor-in-Chief and General Manager

Nora Parker, Senior Managing Editor

Eric Frost, Managing Editor

MapPoint 2004 Product Overview

A Note from Michael Graff

General Manager for Microsoft’s MapPoint Business Unit

Michael Graff

I’m pleased to introduce this special edition of Directions Magazine dedicated to the latest release of our business analysis and visualization software, Microsoft® MapPoint® North America and Microsoft® MapPoint® European Edition.

Since MapPoint was first introduced in 1998, our team has worked hard to provide you with high-quality maps, the latest demographic data and increasingly intuitive visualization tools — all at a great value right out of the box. We hope that you share our enthusiasm as you read on and learn more about the new and enhanced features. To try the features out for yourself, we invite you to order the trial version available now.

New Providers for Better Data Visualization

MapPoint contains updated maps and demographic data in the North American and European 2004 versions to help you visualize and communicate your business information with accurate, detailed data. The most notable additions to the data revolve around fresh business-related demographic and consumer profile data for the United States, sourced from two premier data partners:

Applied Geographic Solutions, Inc. (AGS) has supplied more than 100 core demographic data variables, including population totals, population ages, house values, commuter information, weather, education levels and household information (such as income, family size and computer usage). Incorporate these demographics to enhance analysis of your own business data or to narrow down a business opportunity.

Simmons detailed U.S. consumer purchase behavior data provides information on the lifestyles, media behavior, product purchases and brand preferences of the United States consumer. MapPoint is the first and only place that Simmons data is available at the low level geographies offered in MapPoint, including shopping habits, credit card use and television services. With Simmons data, you can compare your business information with consumer purchase behavior to reveal the best location for a new store or the best place to target your marketing efforts.

Though MapPoint contains hundreds of variables, you may want to purchase data that does not come with MapPoint. Both AGS and Simmons offer MapPoint users the ability to purchase supplemental demographic variables and updates and then import and map this data in MapPoint.

Features and Functions for Clearer Business Communication

The maps in the product have been updated to provide you with accurate, current street data, which includes 6.7 million miles of roads in the North American version and 4.3 million kilometers of roads in the European version. The map of Europe now contains updated municipal geographic boundaries, address-finding capabilities and detailed street network data in Sweden, Portugal, Norway and Finland. This makes it easier than ever to view your business data within geographic boundaries that matter most to your company.

Now both MapPoint 2004 and Pocket Streets, which ships with MapPoint, support the real-time global positioning system (GPS) and a wider range of GPS devices than ever before (includes almost any device running NMEA 0183 version 2.0 or later on COM Port 20 or below.) You simply plug your GPS device into a laptop running MapPoint or your Pocket PC running Microsoft Pocket Streets, and the products synchronize your position and let you see your location on-screen. This makes finding your location on the map easy and accurate. Both MapPoint and Pocket Streets now check the GPS device for location information every second.

You can easily find the closest restaurant, hotel or cash machine with enhanced business listings and points of interest. The North American version contains more than 1.4 billion restaurants, hotels, service stations, cash machines, etc., while the European version tallies more than 400,000 points of interest.

MapPoint 2004 users will benefit from a range of usability enhancements that make everyday experience with MapPoint better. Take advantage of more accurate and easier-to-understand driving directions at complicated intersections and on routes that require several quick turns in a row. The ability to print full-page maps and arrows on the map indicating one-way streets also makes MapPoint easier to use. Sixty new pushpin symbols (used to designate specific map locations) have been added to the hundreds already available. As in the last version, you can create our own customized pushpin symbols of your company’s logo or brand so that you have the symbols you need.

Have more questions about what MapPoint 2004 offers? Our list of Frequently Asked Questions and detailed tutorials can help.

Developers Have More Options

Developers can build MapPoint solutions in three ways. First, you can write an extension that adds new functionality to MapPoint using automation and COM Add-ins. This new functionality usually appears as a new menu item. You can also write applications that automate MapPoint, such as a Word macro to automatically drop a map into a document. And lastly, you can write an application that embeds MapPoint into your own application using automation and the MapPoint ActiveX® control.

Now using one or more of the programming approaches explained above, developers can take advantage of the new and enhanced features for developers in MapPoint 2004. These features include getting a location from a United Kingdom Ordinance Survey Grid reference string, registering COM add-ins for all users of a machine (use HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE for all users or HKEY_CURRENT_USER just for current user), and automating full-page map printing through the application programming interface (API). MapPoint now also integrates better with Microsoft Visual Studio® .NET, which means easier creation of MapPoint COM Add-ins and automatic recognition of MapPoint in the Visual Studio wizard.

If you’re a developer, please read MapPoint’s MSDN Magazine article by Steve Lombardi about the different ways to use MapPoint 2004 within your application. This article also explains the difference between the MapPoint Web Service and MapPoint 2004.

MapPoint 2004 Partners and Applications

MapPoint aims to provide you with everything you need to get started doing everyday business mapping and analysis by including powerful data and analysis tools right in the box. If, however, you want a solution created specifically for your business’ special requirements, MapPoint partners can help. Below are partners that specialize in creating applications for everything from fleet management to criminal investigation. Some partners sell data, while others can help you integrate MapPoint into your contact management tool. Please read more about North American and European MapPoint partners.

North American Partners

AGS Applied Geographic Solutions, Inc.

High quality demographic data products and the lifestyle segmentation system, Mosaic

AGS delivers an extensive range of the highest quality demographic data products and lifestyle segmentation system, MOSAIC™. All databases are derived from superior source data and the most sophisticated, refined, and proven methodologies. The vast majority of AGS' market leading databases are available down to the block group levels. AGS databases include census data, estimates and projections, Consumer Expenditures, Mediamark Consumer Behavior, Insource Consumer Profiles, BusinessCounts daytime population, Assets & Debts / Net Worth, CrimeRisk, WeatherRisk, climate, Puerto Rico data, MOSAIC™ segmentation, retail potential, computer ownership and Internet usage, and Demographic Dimensions.

Acowin Map
Team Management Systems, Inc.

Applications for the contracting industry, commercial, residential, industrial, institutional as well as installation and service contractors

The ACOWIN for Windows Dispatch Board offers seamless integration with Microsoft's Map Point© mapping software. With the ACOWIN Mapping interface and Microsoft Map Point© installed on your computer, the dispatcher will be able to instantly view a map of any worksite, or even pull up a route map of a technician's schedule for the day from the Dispatch Board with a click of the mouse. The powerful combination of Microsoft Map Point© and the ACOWIN Dispatch Board can help you to minimize the travel time and keep your technicians on the job sites, generating income!

Cruiser Software
Cruiser Software

A MapPoint solution for today's GIS demands

Cruiser Software’s Data2Map manages a complex, geo-spatial data store with the ease and elegance of Microsoft's MapPoint rendering engine. With the Data2Map solution, the flexibility and power of GIS found in today's sophisticated mapping engines, is now available for MapPoint. Data2Map breaks through the limitations of MapPoint by managing an unlimited number of shapes and pushpins, providing layer control, allowing data-dependent symbology and full-featured data management. Bridging the gap between the technical demands of GIS and the easy-to-use Microsoft Office product, Data2Map meets the needs of those companies that require the mapping of large, complex datasets, but lack the means required for deploying a more traditional mapping engine.

eSite, Inc.

Integrated site assessment solutions

ActMap is an add-on for ACT! From eSite, Inc., which integrates MapPoint with the popular ACT! contact management software. Data can be moved either from ACT! Into MapPoint or from MapPoint into ACT! The result is the full power of both applications to leverage ACT!’s complete range of relational database features and all of MapPoint’s power to help analyze, route, plan and review any data which is geo-referenced. Some examples of its use include Sales and Sales Management, Warehouse Delivery, Public Health, Data mining - the list is endless.

Forensic Logic Forensic Logic, Inc.

Crime analysis solutions to law enforcement professionals

Forensic Logic Forensic Logic, Inc.'s application, CrimePoint, is used to more rapidly detect criminal suspects and identify areas of high criminal incidence for the law enforcement and public safety industry. Configured as a standalone workstation application, a turnkey hardware/software solution or a powerful integrated client/server system, CrimePoint is used by local, state and federal law enforcement agencies throughout North America. CrimePoint incorporates sophisticated data management techniques based on Microsoft SQL Server, robust geographic information mapping based on MapPoint and proprietary criminal behavioral algorithms developed over a 25 year period.


Fleet management solutions

GEOTAB Having quality maps is essential for a fleet manager to pinpoint activity and optimize operations and GEOTAB and Microsoft MapPoint 2004 are a powerful combination for businesses operating with fleet vehicles. GEOTAB is the only GPS system that uses dynamic processing of GPS data to calculate distance driven within OEM distance requirements. This enables GEOTAB to spread its use across several levels within an organization thus making GEOTAB a growth foundation for fleet and outside operations business management. GEOTAB offers solutions for North America and Europe.

GlobeSplorer GlobeXplorer, LLC

Online library of commercial earth imagery; customer

GlobeXplorer GlobeXplorer’s ImageConnect is a unique mapping application extension that can instantly retrieve satellite and aerial photos into a user’s web application, desktop, or mobile device from GlobeXplorer's online aerial image database. ImageConnect takes away the time, cost and hassle of locating an image provider, waiting for delivery, and managing large image files. Using ImageConnect, and its core programming toolkit, ImageBuilder, MapPoint.NET developers and users can connect directly to GlobeXplorer’s global online imagery server and pull aerial photos directly into their online project. Developing dynamic web applications that include aerial and satellite imagery has never been easier.

LinXoft Solutions, Inc.

Product development, software integration, consulting and business solutions such as Microsoft CRM and MapPoint.

MapLinX Pro from LinXoft Solutions, Inc. is an add-on query tool that is seamlessly integrated with MapPoint. The product is designed to meet the needs of any sized business, whether you are a single proprietary user or part of a large-scale enterprise it can help you provide business intelligence capabilities including the ability to geocode, query, map and analyze corporate information upon virtual maps. The intuitive and user-friendly interface of MapLinX Pro makes it easy for the users to manage their own map layers from various data sources. Developers can write MapPoint-based applications that make API calls to MapLinX Pro to leverage its capabilities.

Mapping Solutions Mapping Solutions

Map-In-A-Box™ seamlessly integrates MapPoint® 2004 functionality into MapInfo Professional™ or ArcGIS™

Map-In-A-Box brings the best of both worlds together….MapInfo Professional or ArGIS and Microsoft MapPoint 2004. Street level mapping has never been easier. Batch geocoding to street number brings your addresses to life and can be used in MapInfo Professional or ArcGIS. Drive time polygons can be created as a new vector layer. The ‘Info Tool’ will give you reverse geocoding functionality.North American and European Editions are available.

Mapping Analytics Mapping Analytics

Geographically based products and services


MapBridge is an easy-to-use addition to MapPoint from Mapping Analytics that spans the functionality of two powerful applications, Microsoft MapPoint version 2004 and SRC Allocate™ version 5.5. Allocate is the leading data retrieval engine that compresses, stores, manages, retrieves and displays geographically organized data. The data can include demographic attributes, customer data or any data that can be organized into standard census or postal geographies. Allocate also allows users to store custom geographic or geometric areas, such as trade areas or sales territories, then obtain data for those areas in just seconds.

Mobile GPS Online

Mobile GPS Online

Application software development utilizing GPS, GIS, MapPoint and Wireless Communication Technologies

GPSTrackP is a low-cost vehicle tracking and management system from Mobile GPS Online, a mobile GPS products and services firm specializing in system integration and application software design and development utilizing GPS, MapPoint and wireless communication technologies. GPSTrackP uses GPS data loggers to collect tracking data, and then display, analyze, and report the tracking data through a powerful software tool based on Microsoft MapPoint technology. It is not a real-time tracking system, but it offers a powerful tool to manage your most valuable business assets vehicle and drivers in a most efficient way at a lowest possible cost.


NAC Geographic Products, Inc.

Driving directions and location based services web applications

NAC Geographic Products, Inc. has developed a revolutionary technology – the Natural Area Coding System and its derived systems (the Global Postal Code System, the Universal Address System, the Universal Map Grid System and the Universal Property Identifier System). This technology has unified addresses, postal codes, area codes, map grid coordinates, geographic coordinates and property identifiers in the world into standard and highly efficient codes called Natural Area Codes (NACs). Using NACs can reduce by more than 80% the number of characters that are needed to communicate locations. This revolutionary technology integrated with Microsoft MapPoint Web Service has resulted in the world most efficient and powerful location based service web applications: TravelGIS Driving Directions Service.

Panorama Software Ltd.

Business intelligence software

Panorama The Panorama NovaView business intelligence platform enables companies to rapidly deploy analytic and reporting solutions and build customized BI applications. These solutions provide the relevant information and proactive intelligence needed to make the best decisions and generate great results. The NovaView platform is comprised of a scalable, high performance web application server, easy to use client interfaces, robust analytics and report management services. Panorama’s NovaView BI platform is uniquely optimized for Microsoft® Analysis Services and Microsoft® Office Systems and can deliver access or analyze data from any back end database, including leading vendors such as Oracle, IBM, Microsoft, Teradata and others. NovaView PinPoint for Microsoft MapPoint projects data stored in Microsoft Analysis Services cubes onto geographical maps.



Paradox Software Consulting, Inc.

Software tools and services specifically for the Supply Chain

PART is a fleet routing optimization package from Paradox Software Consulting, Inc. which considers factors such as volumes, customer delivery time windows and distance. By using the power of Map Point combined with the heuristics contained in PART you can produce turn by turn driving instructions to assure that driver efficiency is maximized. Real-time updates are available via the internet for construction updates to prevent possible delays. PART was developed in Visual C++ using Object Oriented Design methodology and Component Object Model concepts.

Ship2save transport intelligence solutions

Ship2save has created a software system that will eliminate the ‘middlemen’ and associated additional costs of present methods used in the transport industry. The main objective of the Ship2save transport portal is to provide an effective system for both companies that ship significant goods via truck transport as well as transport firms themselves. has identified that such a system is severely lacking in the transport industry. Not only would this system reduce costs and optimize both shippers’ traffic mangers and transports’ truckers/dispatchers time but it would also provide the customers of the new system extensive reporting and tracking capabilities.

Simmons Market Research Bureau

The nation's leading authority on the behavior of the American consumer

BrandTract is a new service from Simmons, the nation's leading authority on the behavior of the American consumer. Expanding on the Simmons consumer data in MapPoint, BrandTract™ offers online access to localized consumer usage estimates for thousands of brands and services measured in the Simmons National Consumer Survey. BrandTract offers data for any U.S. geography you choose in an easy to use application that provides PDF reports along with data files formatted for use with Microsoft MapPoint. Import BrandTract data directly into MapPoint to visualize consumer usage for everything from brands of peanut butter to brokerage firms used.

Spatial Point SpatialPoint, LLC

Solutions for companies of all sizes and industries

SpatialPoint’s Store Locator is a popular product or service for any company with multiple business locations. It enables you to direct customers searching for a specific product or service to your nearest store, branch or outlet. Store Locator uses MapPoint Web Service to retrieve high quality maps and accurate driving directions. Optional enhanced capabilities include a trip planner, location editor, and location analyzer. Store Locator is offered as a product or as a hosted Web service.

Supply chain management

Where-Tech is a manufacturer of both vehicle hardware and base software for GPS tracking of fleet activities. Our solutions integrate detailed GPS position and vehicle status monitor with MapPoint and MS Access to provide detailed reports of operations in two formats. The EC500 system is 'passive' Data Logging System and automatically downloads data each time a vehicle returns to its base location. The M3000 system is internet enabled and give live reports of position while still recording details for later download over the free short range data radio thereby keeping cellular costs down.

European Partners

bVisual provides visual software solutions

pinXplorer, from bVisual ltd., enhances Microsoft MapPoint to provide easy-to-use drag’n’drop push pins. pinXplorer was originally developed for plotting the location of different types of deer over a number of days, but any two dimensional data sets can be applied, with different colored and shaped symbols identifying each set easily. pinXplorer provides simple toggling of name and information balloons of multiple push pins, and allows push pin notes to be searched and highlighted. The push pins can be imported from Excel spreadsheets using Lat\Lon, address or OS GB references or exported back again. pinXplorer turns MapPoint into an effective and useful 2-dimensional data plotting and analysis tool.

Complete solutions for vehicle management
Compucon Compucon S.A. develops and provides integrated software applications and high technology electronics solutions. Our activities and product lines address challenges of automated procedures in the industrial environment and the opportunities of the networking era, by providing integrated solutions in selected industrial fields. In this dynamic environment, Compucon is committed to the same values that lead to success: investment in cutting-edge technologies, investment in people, in innovation, in research and development, in customer service and support

Professional services for organizations requiring expertise across the enterprise

Esporta Health and Fitness, the premium family fitness and racquets operator identified that improved IT would help its 66 clubs generate and retain more individual and corporate members. Solutions provider DPR Consulting developed a Business Intelligence solution based on Microsoft data mining technology. It is enabling Esporta to take a single view of its customer base and make better decisions regarding its marketing spend. The health and fitness operator is now equipped with better knowledge of its customers’ behaviour enabling more informed decision-making.

Mobile solutions for information channels such as web, wap, sms, mms, pda and voice

mecomo AG specializes in developing and hosting mobile solutions for all information channels such as web, wap, sms, mms, pda and voice (focus on location-based services) based on Microsoft ASP.NET, Visual Basic® .NET, C#, MapPoint WebService and MapPoint 2004, as well as content (POI) aggregation and distribution. Customer extract: Vodafone, T-Mobile, Hutchison 3G, O2, Mobilkom Austria, Connect Austria, BMW, Daimler Chrysler,, Jamba and Microsoft. With FRIENDS.nextome, users can keep track of their mobile buddies via the cell information provided by the mobile cell operators. Buddies that are being tracked have to approve tracking. MapPoint WebService is used to display the location of buddies on a map, provide address information and calculate routes from users to buddies.

Custom Marketing Analysis software solution with Microsoft MapPoint and SQL Server Technology

GeoAnalyzer is an Business Intelligence and GeoMarketing Solution from New Network Technology srl which is integrated with MapPoint 2002 and SQL Server or MSDE, MapPoint, and external charts and OLAP cubes. With this tool marketing managers can do several analysis and marketing plans by analyzing company sales, costs, budget and others analysis including planning for a new product and services launch, with MapPoint territory visualization and charts.

AutoRoute, MapPoint and MapPoint Web Services

SpedSoft Market Viewer uses MapPoint to extract addresses to target for special campaigns. As part of the campaign follow-up, the addresses are imported as pushpins to a MapPoint map that is divided into different territories used by the salespeople. When a salesperson double-clicks on a pushpin, the map shows a balloon with some data. When the conversation is finished and the form is closed, MapPoint is updated and the symbol on the pushpin tells the status of the customer. It could be that a meeting is planned, that the customer has bought the product, or that the salesperson got a negative response.

For more Detailed Product Information, go to our MapPoint Extension page... HERE.

Past Articles on MapPoint

• Microsoft Maps A New Niche. More

Microsoft Releases MapPoint 2002. More

• Microsoft MapPoint 2002 Review. More

Microsoft’s MapPoint Alliance Program. More

MapPoint Web Services

More information about MapPoint Web Services from Microsoft. More

• SPECIAL REPORT: Microsoft & AT&T Wireless join forces in providing Location-based Services. More

• The Gears Have Been Greased. Mobile Location-Based Services are ready to roll! - Part 1. More

• The Gears Have Been Greased. Mobile Location-Based Services are ready to roll! - Part 2. More

• XML Web Services, GIS, and Location Technologies - Part 1 More

• XML Web Services, GIS, and Location Technologies - Part 2 More

Other Microsoft Mapping News

• Microsoft's Acquisition of Vicinity - IDC's Perspective & Outlook. More

• Microsoft SQL Server: Future Plans for Supporting Spatial Data. More

• Microsoft Redirecting MapBlast to MSN. More

• The Oscars of Web Mapping. More

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Eric Frost, Managing Editor
Nora Parker, Senior Managing Editor
Joe Francica, Editor & General Manager

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