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Old 02-03-2011, 08:59 PM
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vslaugh vslaugh is offline
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Default Course Maps for Dummies w/ Google Docs Drawings

I just wanted to recommend anyone like me who's not skilled in graphic design software to check out Google Docs Drawings for making simple course maps. Introduced last year, it's free, set up for collaboration, and really easy/intuitive by my experience. I spent an hour or so trying to play with Inkscape, but found that Google Docs seems to have everything I needed for a simple course map with almost no learning curve. Plus, it looks like you could export a SVG file from Google Draw and then work on it with more powerful software.

I whipped up a course map for Roland Park in Akron based on a Google Earth screenshot in about two hours (view pdf):


What I did above was a pretty simple preliminary sketch of a course map. I'm very much a novice, but if you have any specific questions about how the above map was made feel free to post them here.
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Old 02-03-2011, 09:01 PM
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mashnut mashnut is offline
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Looks pretty good, a map like that is perfect for people like me who pull up course maps on their phones to help with navigation issues.
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Old 02-03-2011, 10:22 PM
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Wow, that is awesome. How did you do the Google Maps overlay. I've been looking for something to do this for my local course for a while now.

I'm off to check this out...
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Old 02-03-2011, 10:24 PM
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Good to know thanks for the info!
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Old 02-03-2011, 10:38 PM
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Excellent suggestion on how to make maps! I never knew about this tool. .....and great work on that map! If all the regulars here decided to do 1 map per month of courses that do not have them, all the popular courses would be done in no time.

One small suggestion I have that is a common complaint I have with maps (and your map suffers from it a little) is that the hole numbers are quite small. Makes it hard to read on a phone when zoomed out far enough to see several holes at once (even more so if you are in sunlight). Also, black on gray does not provide good contrast when printing out.

One other suggestion that is useful in lieu of good tee signs is to include hole lengths on the map (even if they are approximate as in paced off - just make a note on the map). Lengths can be listed in a box on the side. Example of one I did years ago (PowerPoint)
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Old 02-03-2011, 10:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by klay View Post
How did you do the Google Maps overlay.
I (1) took a screenshot, (2) saved that screenshot as a jpg (I used GIMP to do that, but I'm sure that's overkill and there's a simpler way to do it), (3) used the Google Docs Drawing feature to import a jpg, and (4) drew a big white rectangle in front of the Google Maps image before exporting the map.
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Old 02-03-2011, 10:59 PM
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It could be cool with the map still behind it too.
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Old 02-03-2011, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vslaugh View Post
I (1) took a screenshot, (2) saved that screenshot as a jpg (I used GIMP to do that, but I'm sure that's overkill and there's a simpler way to do it), (3) used the Google Docs Drawing feature to import a jpg, and (4) drew a big white rectangle in front of the Google Maps image before exporting the map.
Thanks!
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Old 02-03-2011, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave242 View Post
Excellent suggestion on how to make maps! I never knew about this tool. .....and great work on that map! If all the regulars here decided to do 1 map per month of courses that do not have them, all the popular courses would be done in no time.

One small suggestion I have that is a common complaint I have with maps (and your map suffers from it a little) is that the hole numbers are quite small. Makes it hard to read on a phone when zoomed out far enough to see several holes at once (even more so if you are in sunlight). Also, black on gray does not provide good contrast when printing out.

One other suggestion that is useful in lieu of good tee signs is to include hole lengths on the map (even if they are approximate as in paced off - just make a note on the map). Lengths can be listed in a box on the side. Example of one I did years ago (PowerPoint)
Good points. Thanks for the suggestions. I'll have to watch how those issues play out in printed prototypes and think about how to represent the distances in the future.

Also, I suppose the power of DGCR could be harnessed through the collaborative features of Google Draw. If people share their maps-in-progress publicly or with a few key collaborators, DGCR members who live several hours away from a course could actually contribute to that course by working on that map, or at least give hands-on suggestions to improve the maps.
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Old 02-03-2011, 11:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mashnut View Post
It could be cool with the map still behind it too.
One thing I've been doing is taking the JPG map that people post and layering it on top of Google Earth. You create a .kml file that way, and it can be used with Google Earth on your phone. That way, not only do you have the course map, you've got a GPS position of yourself, so you can really tell where you are on the course.

Can you tell I hate to get lost on the course?
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