Thursday, June 29, 2006

2006 WTC Capitol Mile!

We recently put up the course layout for the 2006 Wisconsin Track Club Capitol Mile on This is another local race in Madison, WI, taking place on Sunday July 23rd. The race takes place at the beautiful capitol building and should be a really fun event.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Elver Park Firecracker Run! is working with KMR Media Partners to help promote the Elver Park Firecracker 10K/5K run here in Madison, WI. A portion of the proceeds from the run goes towards the Madison Parks Playground Equipment project. Elver park is actually really close to where we live, maybe a mile and a half, so we're pretty excited that we have an opportunity to apply the work that we've done for the site to benefit the community.

Happy running, and look for our fliers in your gift bags!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Sitemaps and

Recently after we put up I started playing around with Google Sitemaps. The service basically allows you to create a sitemap of your site that can be downloaded by search engines for help in indexing the site. I recently posted to the google-sitemaps group about some of my experiences with it because I've seen some oddities. The strangest thing that I've seen is that sometimes the date that the Sitemaps site lists as having last indexed has actually gone back in time, from the 14th of June to the 7th.

The response from someone in the community said that others have seen similar behavior. The strangest thing is that the Sitemap on the site states that pages are updated daily. Since the site is designed for journaling outdoor activities, this seems reasonable, but it doesn't seem to be happening. Another oddity was that there were HTTP errors (because we took down the forum) as recently as the 16th, and the sitemap was downloaded as recently as yesterday, the 19th.

All of this wouldn't be a big deal until we get some content up, but eventually I want to incorporate Google Co-op so that searches in Google can return results from directly in your search results. This can only happen if Google is indexing the site often enough for things to be up-to-date.

Stay tuned, and maybe soon we'll have full text search and Google Co-op integration.

Monday, June 19, 2006

New Header and Logo

We're starting to play around with the header on and trying to get something a little better up there. We've been using iStockPhoto to try to find some decent images for the site, with marginal success. I haven't spent too much time on it yet, maybe I'll have some more time in the next few days. The one that's up there is decent but I'd like to get something better.

It was also a pain to manipulate the logo, username and password to go along with the image and get everything to a point where it was visible. You still can't see the login stuff too well, but I'm not sure how long we'll stay with that image so I'm not going to muck with it too much more. Oh, we also changed the logo to take out the texture so it's a little more readable. I've complained that it looks a bit plain now but not everyone agrees with me :)

Sunday, June 18, 2006

More new additions

We received some much-needed feedback from members of the outdoors blogging community regarding the site and have started to incorporate it as we have time. Of most relevance is the addition of a small bit of text to the homepage of that actually describes the site. We've been meaning to do that for a while and just haven't gotten around to it. Thanks goes out to Tom at Two-Heel Drive, Glenn at, and Dylan at for their feedback.

There are still a ton of things that we're looking at doing with the site, including geo-RSS feeds (both import to journal entries and actual syndication) and GPX import. Stay tuned for more updates, and of course, please let us know if you have any comments or suggestions.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

MyOutdoors Enhancements

We have been working diligently trying to improve Here are some of the new features:

  • Pictures! You can now add pictures to your journal. We require you to host your pictures elsewhere but all you need to do is enter in the url to your pictures.
  • Full Screen View - You'll notice a new Full Screen button on the map, click this to be taken to the full screen page.
  • Publishing Journals - Now when you create a new journal it is not automatically available to the world. You decide when to make your journal public by clicking the "Publish" button in the Journal Editor.
  • Map Types - Google Maps supports Satellite maps, Street maps and Hybrid maps. Whatever map type you are using when you click "Save Journal" will be saved with your journal entry your journal will be displayed using the new map type from then on.
Some features we are currently working on:
  • GPX file upload/download - We will soon support uploading of GPX files you create with your GPS unit. This means no more clicking on the map to create waypoints! We will also offer a GPX file download for all journals.
  • KML file upload/download - KML files are used to import into Google Earth. We hope to offer this capability soon.
  • Geocoding - many of you have probably noticed that there is no way to search for an address on our site. Well Google finally came around an is offering this functionality in their API so we will be adding it to the site soon.
  • Bug Fixes - We know they're out there. We're trying.
Please keep sending us feedback on the site. Your feedback is extremely helpful to us and we try to incoporate as many of your ideas as we can. Thanks so much for your help!

Thats all for now, Happy Mapping!