US: MapQuest, an online directions and locations mapping service, announced the launch of one of its latest applications called MapQuest Atlas. MapQuest Atlas is an interactive information source about the world that benefits visual learners by offering both pictorial and linguistic information.
MapQuest Atlas offers several methods of obtaining information about the world, its oceans, continents and countries. For example, the country comparison tool on MapQuest Atlas allows the online software user to compare two countries’ economic, geographic, and demographic data in a side by side column framework.
One of the advantages of MapQuest Atlas is that it makes it easier to access country profiles via quick searches. Moreover, rather than scrolling down a long drop down menu to get additional country data, one can simply click on a tab at the top of the screen. It is also easy to access one country’s data from another country’s data by simply clicking on ‘home’, finding its location on the map and clicking on it. If the name of the country is known, that country’s individual information can also be found by typing its name in the search bar.
MapQuest Atlas also provides information about world’s climate, time zones and population. The data is somewhat limited as of October 2010. One of the first things MapQuest Atlas shows after clicking on a country are its capital, temperature and time.
The zoom feature on the home page of MapQuest Atlas allows the viewer to observe territories of water owned by specific countries along shorelines. These territories are delineated by yellow lines that extend out into the water and around a particular country’s water jurisdiction. Small Island territories are also outlined by yellow lines enabling the MapQuest Island user to know where to zoom in closer.
For those who are travelling and want to find directions in a particular country, the regular MapQuest can be quickly accessed from MapQuest Atlas by clicking on the gray MapQuest link at the top right of many of MapQuest Atlas pages. This link also has a drop down menu just to the right with additional links to the MapQuest blog, company information and MapQuest feature instructions.