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Seattle Conference on Scalability: Scaling Google Maps from the big screen do...

Google Tech TalksJune 14, 2008ABSTRACTJerry will talk about scaling Google Maps from the desktop down to mobile phones where usage isgrowing rapidly and will someday surpass desktop usage. He will discuss the approaches used in adapt-ing the application to work in a low bandwidth, high latency environment with a wide variety of net-works and devices. Mobile data rates currently range from 100 Kbps to 2 Mbps but more significantly,HTTP network request latency is measured in seconds. Mobile phone screens are very small comparedto laptops, so we can't just shrink down the view. User input is often limited to 12-key keypads plus twosoft keys, sometimes augmented with an alpha keyboard and/or a touch screen.The key adaptation was reimplementing the AJAX web site as a client-server application, ported toseveral mobile platforms. We redesigned the user interface for the narrow UI bottleneck and added cel-lular-based location detection so people don't have to type an address just to get the map open to theright page. An application-specific network protocol and tile cache help with the high latency networkby multiplexing requests together into fewer round trips. A special "mobile" tile set helps with latencyand bandwidth by downloading smaller map tiles while offering more frequent road labels to suit tinyscreens. Compression techniques such as a compact-header JPEG format for satellite images also help.The server is stateless so scaling up capacity is mostly handled by adding more servers.People are unaccustomed to downloading applications to their phones, and the phones have downloadlimits, so it's important to keep the download package small. We also get the application preinstalled onsome phones.Speaker: Jerry MorrisonJerry Morrison is a tech lead on Google Maps for mobile. He programs the server and clients incollaboration with teams in London, New York, Seattle, Tokyo, Beijing, and Cupertino. Jerry's careerinterest is bringing new forms of media to many people.
Length: 20:00

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