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Halloween is BY FAR my favorite holiday, so I find it only appropriate to publish a little something to help spread the holiday fear. A few years ago we published a Halloween Map (aka The Haunted Map), but we’re not doing it this year (and haven’t in 3 years). This year, I’m simply going to show you a very useful feature built into Internet Explorer 7 and the Windows Live Toolbar that allows you to go to any haunted web site, select the address and view the haunted house in Bird’s Eye! The best and most up to date site I found is Haunted House Online powered by Haunt World. Now, going to either one of these sites will definitely put you in the mood to scare and be scared so check them out just for the content alone. But, what about the maps?!?

Okay, so, I’m in Internet Explorer 7 and I have the latest Windows Live Toolbar installed – it’s in beta, but the whole beta suite of the Windows Live Suite (Mail, Movie Maker, Family Safety, Writer, Messenger, Toolbar, Photo Gallery – all free) are absolutely money. Did you know you can set a custom sound (signature sound) that all your friends hear when you log in to messenger? I’m getting off track. 

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imageThe site has a map that you can click on – watch the background as the eyes follow your mouse – creepy! You can click on any one of the states on the map to get a resulting list of haunted houses available for you to go scare yourself in. I did a search in Louisiana. If you’ve ever been to New Orleans you know there’s a huge culture of the dead there (and I’m not talking about the fact that it’s the new murder capital of the US). I found The House of Shock in New Orleans. The page includes videos and commentary, but also contact information such as phone number and address. We can select the address with our mouse and see that just by selecting the address, we’ll get a small popup with 3 buttons – 1 for search, 1 for maps and 1 for weather. Clicking the maps button will bring up a preview Virtual Earth map. This is great in the case that you don’t want to leave the web page because the address isn’t in an area where you want to be; but for Halloween, maybe it is!

Now, notice on the map popup there are 3 very useful links – get a full map of the location, get driving directions to this location and get driving directions from this location. Clicking any of these links will take you to Live Search Maps where you can view (or route yourself to) any of the locations on the Haunt World web site. So, even if your favorite web site doesn’t have Bird’s Eye you can still view the locations fairly seamlessly by having the Windows Live Toolbar installed.

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I don’t know about you, but The House of Shock in New Orleans location looks WAY SCARY in some industrial truck yard. WTH?!?

Be safe. Be scary. Be scared. Happy Halloween!

CP