New Open Source Utility Library for the Google Maps API

Wednesday, March 21, 2007 at 5:50:00 PM

The Google Maps API Team is excited to announce our new open source project, the GMaps Utility Library. This project will be hosted on and will let the Google engineers for the Maps API work hand-in-hand with the many great developers in the Maps API community. Together, we can extend the core Maps API and ensure that every developer need is met.

Another reason for this open source project is that we've realized that there are many potential extensions for the Google Maps API, but that the common user still needs a reliable and quick-loading API. Adding custom controls/functionality to the core API adds to the file size and forces developers wanting to tweak the code to overwrite obfuscated JS functions. With this open source project, a developer can include the JavaScript file for the particular library they're interested in. They can even download a copy of it and tweak it for their use.

To kick-start things, we've open-sourced the code for the GMarkerManager and added it to the GMaps Utility Library. The obfuscated GMarkerManager will continue to be available in the core Maps API, but the open source MarkerManager version will now be available via the new library. This will be a starting point for developers to create even more useful components. Just point your browser to and see it for yourself - the documentation, examples, and the unobfuscated code.

There will be both development and release versions of this open source library. This allows for an open development environment in one project, while users can still point to a stable release version of the library for their deployed applications. (You can get the release version of MarkerManager there.) The development community will be involved in the process for deciding which components and versions are migrated to the release branches.

We're inviting all interested developers to join our development project if they'd like to contribute to the library or work on an existing components in the library, such as the MarkerManager. If you're interested, follow the instructions here.