Has anyone yet integrated Google Maps into a Factory PMI page? What would be the best way to go about that?
I don’t have a chance to test it out now, but you could use the ActiveX plugin to get google maps into your project. Installing the plugin adds another palette to the designer that includes an Internet Explorer component. All you need to do is put in the web address for the component’s start page and the client can take it from there.
You probably want to restrict the page in some way (like keeping the user on the google maps site), but I can’t think of a way to do that without looking at it. As soon as I get a chance, I will check it out.
I don’t really know much about google maps, but you can probably integrate it more cleanly (without activex). Do you know how it works? Can you just create a URL that provides an image?
I spent some time searching and didn’t find a Java API to Google maps. There were guys writing Tomcat servlets in Java that output AJAX code that worked with the Google Maps API, but that doesn’t count - you could do that in any language.
I’ll play with the FactoryPMI IE plugin and see how it works.
Has anyone made any progress on integrating Google Earth/Maps or Microsoft Virtual Earth into a Factory PMI project?
Actually, yes, using Google Static Maps.
You can make it dynamic by manipulating the image URLs. You can put the URL in the “Image Path” property of an image component in FactoryPMI.
This page should have all the info you need
(Note that if you copy-and-paste the example URL from that page, remove the trailing backslashes that they use to indicate line-breaks)
I had played with the activex plugin and it worked quite well. The reason I stopped is one day our office had no internet, so the control just showed “This page cannot be displayed.” I realized if ever the site had no internet, or google maps was down, or the API changed etc, there could be big problems, so I opted not to rely on any external services like that.
Just a thought,
Thanks, Charles and Carl. I appreciate the feedback. My applications would be completely Internet dependent anyway, with the devices being monitored, the database and FactoryPMI, and the client all in different locations. Dependency on Google and the currency of the API is certainly an issue though.
We have plans to add an internal (i.e. offline) GIS mapping component, but its a ways off. Till then, google maps is your best bet.