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These 3 Startups Are Ready To Take On Google Maps

Google pushed the ancient art of map-making into new, more user-friendly territory. These startups are among those driving ever further into the uncharted future:

[Illustration by Dan Matutina]

New England Complex Systems Institute

Complaints quantified

NECSI plots tweets by sentiment, positive or negative. A cluster of negative tweets in Queens, New York, for example, led to the discovery of a leaky sewer pipe.


On-the-spot updates

"In some places, satellite images can be 10 years old," says engineer Bobby Sudekum. "You can fly a drone and process images of something that happened just hours ago." Read more >>

Last year, Mapbox partnered with drone makers at senseFly to bring their images to Mapbox’s site.


Geotagged disaster relief

To make use of the vast amount of information placed on social media during natural disasters, volunteers sift through geotagged posts from affected areas, plotting them on maps for aid workers. Read more >>

A version of this article appeared in the April 2014 issue of Fast Company magazine.