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Bing Maps Web Pages

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MPSuperShape can export some or all of the shapes to a web page that uses Microsoft Bing Maps (nee Virtual Earth) or Google Maps. With Bing Maps selected, the Export Options dialog box will look like this:




MPSuperShape currently exports HTML that uses version 7.0 of the Bing Maps API. This requires the user to have a Bing Maps API identifier key. A new key can be allocated at the Bing Maps Account Center for free. The real key is much longer than the one in the above dialog box image. It is strongly recommended that you cut & paste the identifier, and not to try and type it in manually. MPSuperShape simply inserts this identifier text into the resulting HTML, and does not attempt to verify it. Therefore you could use a variable identifier that is recognized by your web server. This may be easier to maintain in a production environment.


MPSuperShape has the option to write the Bing map as either a full web page or as a page fragment. The full web page option is useful for testing because it produces a complete web page. The fragment web page produces a text fragment of HTML that can be included within the <body> tag of a HTML page. This is probably more useful in a production environment where a larger page is set to automatically include the fragment (e.g. using SSI or a PHP include). This allows the map to be updated by only updating the fragment, and not the entire page.


The Alpha slider will be displayed. Bing Map shapes can have their alpha (opacity) set. MapPoint does not support partial alpha, so MPSuperShape lets you set the alpha for all shapes that are exported. Alpha is useful because you can give a shape partial transparency. This lets you view the shape as an overlay, in addition to the map that is covered by the shape. You can set the alpha anywhere between 0% (fully transparent) to 100% (fully opaque).


Below the Alpha slider, the All Shapes are: Closed / Open option is displayed. MapPoint has a bug which means it is impossible to determine if a freeform shape is an open line or a closed polygon. This option lets you specify whether all freeform shapes are written as closed polygons, or open lines. The default is Closed (polygons) as these are the shape types that MPSuperShape was originally designed for.


Bing Maps only works with geographic coordinates using the WGS84, so this is the only Coordinate System option enabled.