Today we are announcing the number of updates that have been made to the Bing Maps Account Center, Bing Maps REST Services and the Bing Maps MSDN documentation.
Bing Maps Account Center
The new updates in the Bing Maps Account Center make it easier to maintain your location data sources through the account center without the need to have to re-upload your entire data source.
The latest updates to the data source management tools allow you to:
Add or create a new dataset record in an existing data source. Before this update adding a new record to an existing data source required making the addition to a local copy of the data source and then re-uploading the complete data source.
Edit a Data Sources Schema. You can now edit the schema of data sources that are already uploaded to the Bing Spatial Data Service. You can add a new property field or edit the data type of an existing field. This saves you the time of having to re-upload your complete data source.
Upload Tab of Pipe delimited data source files. Originally only the Bing Spatial Data Service XML file schema was supported by the Bing Maps Account Center. Now you can upload Tab and Pipe delimited data sources that meet the schema requirements outline here. Note that Tab delimited files work great with Microsoft Excel.
Besides updates to the data source management tools you also now have the ability to:
Watch a Video Tutorial on how to create a Bing Maps Key. A link is provided in the left hand menu that takes you to a video tutorial giving an overview of the Bing Maps Account Center and explains how to create a Bing Maps Key. This video and other videos on Bing Maps news can also be found here.
Experience Improved Performance. Several performance enhancements have been made to the service to allow for an improved user experience. In addition several bug fixes were included which helped to not only improve performance but also improve the stability of the service.
In addition to updating the Bing Maps Account Center Help documentation for the new data source upload capability (including a new topic Deleting a Data Source), there is a new topic Updating Your Bing Maps Account that includes instructions about how to change the Live ID associated with your Bing Maps Account.
Bing Maps REST Service Updates
The Bing Maps REST Imagery Service has had an additional parameter added to it that now allows you to generate static map images with the pushpins de-cluttered. To use this new feature simply add one of the following to your REST call: “declutterPins=1” or “dcl=1”
Here is an example that creates a map with road imagery and specifies two pushpins that are located very close together. The declutterPins (dcl) parameter is set so that the pushpins both appear separately. If the declutterPins parameter were not set, the pushpins would overlap. Maps for both cases are shown below.
Here is an example with de-cluttering enabled:
Making the same request but without enabling de-cluttering would return the following:
Bing Maps MSDN documentation Updates
There have been a number of new useful articles added to the MSDN documentation on Bing Maps. Code samples were added the Bing Spatial Data Services Query API that show how to use the query API in C# and VB.
Two cross platform API articles were written:
Show Bing Results on a Map: This article shows how to build a web page that uses the Bing API, Version 2 to search for Phonebook entries near a location and then displays the results on a map by using the Bing Maps AJAX Control, Version 7.0 (interactive map) or the Bing Maps REST Services (static map). The Bing Maps REST Services is used to geocode the specified location.
Show Spatial Data Search Results on a Map : This article shows how to build a web page that uses Bing Spatial Data Services to search a data source for entries near a location and then displays the results on a map by using the Bing Maps AJAX Control, Version 7.0 (interactive map) or the Bing Maps REST Services (static map). The Bing Maps REST Services is used to geocode the specified location. The public FourthCoffeeSample data source is used as the sample data source in this example.