The last decade has seen a boom in people becoming acclimated to location technology. Most users may not fully realize that they’re using location technology when they get an alert on their phone that there’s traffic on the way home, or when they get a coupon from an app on their phone for a local restaurant. Smart phones are no longer simply devices for making phone calls, texting, and checking email. For many people, they’ve not only replaced the heavy and clumsy map book that your passenger used to help you navigate, but these “phones” have also replaced the expensive indash GPS systems in our vehicles. It’s so easy today to say the name of a store or venue into your phone, and in seconds receive turn-by-turn directions. That’s not to say that these directions may not try to direct you into a lake, but there’s no denying that location technology has become part of our daily lives. We gladly share our current locations with friends and family with as much fervor as when we shared a photo a few
years ago. Maps and the information they can convey are great tools that developers should take time to learn to use.
A few years ago, I was tasked with upgrading an enterprise GIS application and bringing it into the modern non-mainframe era. Esri had just started releasing Web APIs for use with their technology. At the time, I built my application with the Flex API, and I delved deep into the world of ActionScript and Flex modular development, but it always felt a bit heavy-handed.