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Mar 7, 2006

MapQuest Introduces Beta Version Of OpenAPI For Web Developers

Web-based map provider MapQuest announced today the initial release of free mapping and routing technology for Web developers. MapQuest OpenAPI will provide a core set of mapping, geocoding and routing tools for non-commercial use. Web developers can use OpenAPI's routing capabilities to create mashups that not display locations on a customized MapQuest map and include driving directions.

To publicize the launch of OpenAPI, MapQuest announced a contest where web developers can compete to build the most creative mashup that leverages the mapping and routing functionality of OpenAPI. The contest starts March 7 and runs through the end of March. The winner gets a $1,000 cash prize, and a trip to the Where 2.0 Conference in San Jose, California, June 13-14. Official rules are here.

One of the first web-based mapping services, MapQuest continues to rank as the top mapping site on the Web. The company says a study by comScore Media Metrix showed the site had 42 million users in January, 2006. MapQuest is a wholly owned subsidiary of America Online, Inc.