Tennessee Lily posing, dressed in girly attire. Reminds me of a young, Reba McEntire.

Just in case anyone is wondering what Old Man Jim is up to, well, I picked up a new domain name yesterday and I woke up this morning at 0230 with visions of iframe communication functions dancing in my head so I got up, started coding and here it is 1900 and I'm still in my pajamas and I haven't spoken to a single human all day, much less gone outside. That's alright, the code came out the way I conceived it, and it's great.

I'll put the link to the new site up here when it's ready...


Snow to the north of me, tornados to the south, here I am, stuck in the middle with Piper.

I've been searching for the holy-grail of geo-coding for a while now, trying various systems and methods, and none of them satisfied me. With the right one you should be able to type in your home address and see it on a map, or type in a place and have it discovered. I think I have it now in the simple control you see below. Start typing your search and when you see what you want in the results box below, select it...

I've also implemented this control into the Place Map and when you search for and select a new place, everything gets updated. (holy-grail stuff...) Click the image below to try it out.

I've been putting a lot of effort into my Place Map which is the destination and workhorse of a lot of my tools. I've stripped all the map controls out and replaced them with my own, along with a couple of new ones. There's a cool Quick Zoom tool upper left and I've gained access to the maps attributions on the bottom right, and turned them into links.

An interesting video I ran across: If You Can.

Made myself a fine meatloaf tonight. Not only pretty, but delicious!

Perfectly cooked on the inside I might add...


I've put together a nice little List of all my Tools, in alphabetic sequence with descriptions. Click on any tool name to run it.

The new maps generate random colors now for Counties and Zips across three new map modes. Just sayin...

How about zip codes in NY state?

Map Zoom algorithms suck when it comes to accurately returning to the place you started from. I don't know what it is, rounding errors of floats or some such shit. Today I wrote some code that corrects that problem with my new maps (implementing ERSI). Works really good...

If the video fails to load, click Here.

All through my journey as a computer programmer I've had the conviction that whatever you can conceive can ultimately be achieved. Sometimes it's damned hard and really stretches my brain to it's limit but I push on and when it finally works it's a true eureka moment where I thrust my arms in the air and yell yea!

The sad thing is that most of the time nobody sees it or gets it, except me. So tonight, I'm going to put my latest breakthrough out there just because this is my blog and I can. Wether you read on is up to you...

The challenge I faced is that the articles (posts) in this blog are simply lightweight shells from which I can dish out a little PHP and Javascript, but not build a complicated app within. So, I have to construct a window (called an iframe) inside the post which runs the app and then add functionality around it within the post. In the example below I present a zipcode map of my area.

The map is inside the window and is a stand-alone complicated piece of mapping code that I've developed to handle the context, which in this case is showing the outline of the zip code over the area. I have other apps that show individual counties and multiples of both. All run inside of a window.

The complication arises from the communication between the shell (the blog post) and the map program. As the user pans and zooms the map I needed to know what the lat/lng and zoom values are when the user stops, so I can pass those values to the very cool functions available for that location (on the bottom). You can see those numbers in the lower left corner of the map.

I really wanted to open the functions in the same tab as the map, so that clicking the back button brings you back to the map but the nature of browser history is such that it refreshes the page and you lose that position you have so carefully panned and zoomed down to.

Well, with some amazing code, I've pulled that off. You can now zoom down to a neighborhood you want to see and all of the functions are relative to that position and zoom level and when you go back, you're still there on the map.

This is a game changer as far as I'm concerned. It's now a really valuable tool for checking out an area. All of the map functions give you a different perspective based on the provider (Google, Bing, Streetview and OpenStreetMap), and even my new Flickr Geo app will give you photos taken within a mile.

So, enough of my rambling, enter your zipcode here, zoom down to your house and see what I'm talking about. Oh, and one last thing, click on the lat/lng lower left when you get around to it...


Steph and Melissa brought the girls by today so I cranked up the country music and we hung out in the sun. Bongos were banged... It was 58° and still not a snowflake yet, but it does know how to get it's rain on here. The creek is rising but under control.

A couple of days ago:

If the video fails to load, click Here.

I don't know why I find geographic entities like U.S. Zipcodes and Counties so fascinating, but I obviously do and my latest project has been Counties. Did you know there are 3,142 official counties in the U.S.? Each one has a unique five digit code consisting of a two digit state code and a three digit county code, known as FIPS codes (Federal Information Processing Standard). The state numbers range from 01 (Alabama) to 56 (Wyoming) and each county within a state has a three digit code. Thus, the FIPS code for my county here in Tennessee is 47-099.

My source for this project was a huge geojson file with all of the county polygons packed inside and it was way too big to handle with normal PHP functions so I had to tear it apart with some mad code hacking into 3142 individual county files. That was successful and I now have high quality polygons for every county.

Drop on into my newest tool Counties By State and look around if you like. Once you select a state you can view the individual counties by clicking on the code or select View Polygons to show them all. If showing all you can hover over them for a name or click on a county to bring it up individually.

I'm still working on Alaska, damned state with all it's multi-polygons is driving me crazy :-)