Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Google Maps just ignores the Mexicans

Is it just me, or did Mexico disappear?

Lately I've been fascinated by my friend's road trip through Mexico to Guatemala. Day dreaming the day away, I decided to cruise the world vicariously through Google Maps and trace the path down to Guatemala.

I'm scrolling down the west coast, imagining the warm air rushing past me and my Honda, as I cruise through San Diego and approach the Mexican border. Then, suddenly the road is gone and I'm driving on dirt into a baren land, devoid of any cities, villages, or infrastructure of any kind. I feel like I'm Mad Max, and I have no idea where to find more gas.

My phone rings, and I'm back at my bland desk, surrounded by bland cubical walls, under bland fluorescent light.

"Where the hell is Mexico?", I ask myself as my phone keeps pleading for my attention. There is the placeholder for Mexico, but nothing is in it. No roads, no towns, not even Mexico City. I scroll farther past the baron digital land mass, only to find more placeholders for Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama. It's not until I'm deep in the jungles of South America before I discover that Brazil has a highway system, and towns and cities. But it seems that only Brazil has any cities in South America!

Did I miss something here, or was Brazil the only one who slept with Google in order to appear on the maps?

Maybe it's different on Google Earth, which I cannot use at work. I've done some searching, but I can't find any articles about this apparent "lack" of information. Drop a comment if anyone knows what's behind this stink.

1 comment:

Sebastian said...

I suppose that unfortunately Google just didn't bother to buy digital map data from these countries. I hope they will do it some day... At least Live Maps (http://maps.live.com/) seems to know the Mexican streets.