Archive for the ‘Development updates’ Category

A Real Friending System

Sunday, February 10th, 2008

Most social networking sites have similar systems for making connections between friends to share trusted content. Here at Stickymap, we tried to do something a little bit different, but now we’re going to back to the industry standard. I guess it was the way to go after all.

What were we doing before? “Friending” (or contacts as we called them) was really a 1 way street. You could make a connection with another user on Stickymap without their permission. You can pull a contact from your profile, but they didn’t have to do likewise.

Now we’ve changed to a strict 2 way system. If you are going to friend someone, they have to accept. If you remove a contact, then the connection is removed in both directions. Right now there is no private content, so you won’t be able to find out anything new about your friends that you wouldn’t already know. However, this opens up the possibilites for the future. I believe that people are going to want to see what their friends are doing and saying on the map. People are going to want to message each other.

I want to gather up ideas on what use you’d get from this social network based around our open-edit map, so please but your thoughts in the comments section here.


Links in Location Descriptions

Sunday, February 3rd, 2008

This is another post on web development that you may find interesting.

As you may know, many of our location descriptions include external links. For example, a restaurant posted might contain a link to that restaurant’s website. Here is an example of a location with a link.

Until recently, clicking on those links would cause the web page to load within the iframe that contains the location information. This was a problem because the iframe is only 500 and change in pixel width, and most pages want to be 800 pixels in width. So, we finally got around to changing it.

When you have a link from within an iframe, say <a href=’newPage.php’>, the new page will automatically load within the iframe. In order to make it open up a new browser window, write <a href=’newPage.php’ target=’_blank’> and in order to navigate away from the main Stickymap page, write <a href=’newPage.php’ target=’_parent’>.

Now those 2 options present us with an interesting choice. Do we want external links on locations to open up a new browser window or simply navigate away. Many sites choose to open up a new window in order to prevent users from navigating away from their page. However, this practice is considered by some to be annoying and even spammy. However, I chose to do it that way because when I’m browsing Stickymap, I often want to know information about many different locations. Therefore, it would help me to be able to click on those locations, and have all the company websites open at once without closing my map.  I’d like to get some feedback from you, our users, on this: do you agree with this decision, or would you rather just see a link navigate you away from

Another point of interest is how we implemented this change. All external links from these pages have no target attribute. In other words, they all look like this: <a href=’newPage.php’>. When the description is loaded into the page, is there a way to change the target attributes of all the links? Fortunately, there is, and I’ve used a special javascript library called jquery (website) to make it easier. I surrounded the description in an html <span> element, and gave that element a class of “fix_links”, so the html looks like this: <span class=’fix_links’> ….wiki description in here…. </span>.

Now, in order to change the target attribute of all links within that span, all I had to do was execute the following javascript, which is nice and concise thanks to the jquery javascript library.

$(‘.fix_links a’).attr(“target”, “_blank”);


Stickymap Widget Back Up

Friday, February 1st, 2008

Thanks for your patience – the Stickymap widget is back up and you can continue to use it to develop your sites.  We recently upgraded the widget so that the windows are more compact and therefore more readable.  We’d like to invite your feedback on the functionality of the widget so that we can give our users the best possible experience.


Embeddable Stickymap Down for a Day

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

For the next day, our embeddable feature will load to New York City without displaying our markers. This is necessary in order to debug an Internet Explorer issue that we’re having with one of our client’s pages. Once people have the map up on their live site, we will not be causing these disruptions. Please check this blog for updates.

The good news is that several sites are interested in embedding the widget, and have already started to test it out!


The Stickymap Widget

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2008

Embed Stickymap on Your Site using an iFrame

Sunday, December 9th, 2007

Today we launch the beta version of our embeddable application for your use. You can find an example of an embedded Stickymap application here:

In order to embed the same map on your site, please insert the following into your HTML file:

<iframe src=”″
frameborder=”0″ marginwidth=”0″ marginheight=”0″
vspace=”0″ hspace=”0″ width=”900px” height=”600px”>

Notice that the height and width parameters are set twice in this example, once after “mappage.php” where we say w= and h=, and then another time later. The w=800&h=500 specifies the height and width of the map in pixels, while 900×600 represents the size of the entire iFrame. It’s a good idea to give the iFrame some buffer size around the map in order to prevent scroll bars from cropping up. to Launch Embeddable Widget

Wednesday, December 5th, 2007

Stickymap will soon launch a widget that you can embed in your own site using an iframe. You can view the widget here:

Information on how to integrate this widget onto your site will be coming soon.

Stickymap Graphic Artist launches web portfolio

Friday, November 23rd, 2007

Yelena, one of our talented graphic artists, just launched her own web portfolio, that you can find here. Yelena is a very talented, hard working artist who has been an unbelievably strong member of our team. She helped design and create the layout of our introductory page as well as draw our logos. I hope that you enjoy her portfolio!


Community Organizations Love Stickymap’s Community Mapping Software

Sunday, October 28th, 2007

Just over three weeks ago, we released Stickymap’s Community Mapping tools, and within that short time frame, many different types of community organizations have begun to use the software.  We’re pleasantly surprised to see how community interest groups have applied the software to illustrate their work. To take a look at how our maps are being used, click on the “Case Studies” that are on the right hand sidebar of our blog.

Stickymap’s Community Mapping Tool is free!

Friday, October 26th, 2007

What’s that? You don’t believe us?! It may sound strange that we have made our software free for everyone to use. But the Stickymap team believes that we’re providing a helpful service to organizations that need it most; community groups that are working to build safe and strong neighborhoods. We’re very proud that we are able to help community groups create and share maps of their neighborhoods – all for free! It is fantastic that we are able to work together to facilitate collaborative community support and learning.