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A browser extension to switch between map websites.
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README.md

Logo of the project

MapSwitcher


A browser extension to switch between map websites.


Screenshot of the extension

About

MapSwitcher is a small browser extension which adds buttons to various map services for opening the displayed location in a different service.

Currently supported is switching between Google Maps, Mapy.cz and Geoportal.gov.cz.

This is a small summer project which I did to get some practice with developing browser extensions. There are a few similar projects available, but none support Geoportal.gov.cz and I didn't like their user experience, so I wanted to make a free, simple, open source alternative which would suit my needs and would integrate well with the supported services.

Installation

MapSwitcher currently supports Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Opera.

To install, download the extension either from the Chrome Web Store or the Firefox Add-Ons portal.

Usage

MapSwitcher adds buttons to the tools sections of Google Maps and Mapy.cz, clicking on which opens the currently displayed location in Google Maps, Mapy.cz or Geoportal.gov.cz. In the extension options you can decide which buttons will be shown, as well as whether the new map will open in a new tab.

Developing

MapSwitcher is a fairly standard WebExtension, prepared to work in all the major browsers supporting WebExtensions. Currently it is tested to work in Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Opera, with support for Microsoft Edge coming as soon as Edge officially switches to a Chromium base in the stable releases.

The extension injects content scripts to the supported services, which on load of the page insert the desired buttons to the DOM. When clicking those buttons, the currently displayed location gets extracted from the page URL and gets converted to the coordinate system used by the target service, from which the target URL is assembled and then opened.

Quirks and perks

Most of the work the extension does happens in content scripts, except for the retrieval of Geoportal.gov.cz URLs. Geoportal uses a private API to request permalinks to a map view of a given location, and the API does not accept cross-origin requests. To work around that, we need to send requests to the API from a background script, which avoids the CORS problems.

Links

Licensing

The code in this project is licensed under the MIT license. Everybody is welcome to use, change and modify the project as they see fit.

The Google Maps, Mapy.cz and Geoportal.gov.cz logos are registered trademarks of their respective owners, and are used within this project only for identification purposes.

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