Good morning, Chicago. It's time to check traffic with NBC (and Microsoft Virtual Earth)... 

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Construction and incidents and cameras oh my! Plus, flow data, news, monetization and a clean interface. Now this is a traffic site! 3 years into AJAX map development and UI designers are really starting to get it. Clicking on any pushpin on the map will pop a small window in the lower right hand corner with additional information. For the cameras, you can see a small image with the ability to zoom in to a bigger picture of the roadway.

What I REALLY like is the local component of high traffic road thumbnails. The site has dynamic locations where traffic is a concern at the moment! So, the 5 hottest traffic areas will be thumbnailed (above the maps) to give users a quick reference to a specific location with congestion. Just click any of the icons to zoom into the respective areas.

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The traffic application is a collaboration between MyWeather LLC and NBC Local Media. The MyWeather guys sent me a little background about the application, integration and partnership.

We developed the tools that utilize VE tiles, our own traffic flow/incident overlay, weather overlay, and ad layer overlay. The application supports a rich set of APIs that have allowed NBC LM to host it and create a very dynamic and interactive experience for their site visitors. We also create the dynamic thumbnails that appear above the maps and often on their home page when traffic gets dicey. NBC LM created and designed the web site itself for each of their O&O [owned and operated] stations.

The data comes from a partnership with Clear Channel’s Total Traffic Network and TrafficCast International. TTN provides the incident and construction data, while TCI provides all of the relevant flow information in the market.

The application makes heavy use of the VE roadmap view and we create overlays (tile for tile) of the flow and incident data so users can pan and zoom around. NBC LM will be deploying the same application to 9 of its 10 affiliates. The first roll out was Chicago.

Wow - two great new Virtual Earth web sites in two days! Who else is gonna impress me?

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