Gmaps: Activity Logger

1I’ve been thinking about logging web map user interactions for a while, heavily inspired by sparkgeo‘s Maptiks product. If you haven’t tried Maptiks, you should. The Maptiks dashboard provides you with lots of interesting factoids like map loads, bounce rate, load times, and a heatmap of where users are looking, stratified by zoom level. I have no doubt that this is more than enough data for most people.

With that said, and no offense intended to sparkgeo who I imagine are too busy to address feature requests, the feature I feel that’s missing from Maptiks is that you can’t actually download user interaction data for further analysis. This map, which coincidentally uses Maptiks, is somewhat of a proof of concept towards that goal. The map on the left is what would be presented to the user. When the user navigates, that information (specifically, map center coordinates) is sent to a Firebase (a cloud-based database-type thing), and displayed on the map on the right. I’ve limited the Firebase to only store about 200 points, but that could be expanded to collect many more interactions, although I’m not sure at what point performance would be crippled. I assume a dedicated server would handle the storage of these interactions with little effort. Click and zoom activities could be similarly captured.

Have fun!

edit: I’ll also add that, as with most Firebase apps, the data updates in real time, so you may notice others using the map at the same time as you!


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