The paper map is dead.
Well, that isn't quite true, there's still an undeniable charm, and for some, creative thrill in penning a set of dubiously proportioned directions on the back of a napkin, drawing a treasure map for your kids to go hunting with, or poring over historical maps in libraries (replete with the smell of bygone times and the tension of ever-changing borders).
But for those of us who require a certain level of power, reliability and portability when we travel, it's hard to argue that Google Maps has quickly taken over - and if your job revolves around blogging, tweeting, Instagramming, and all the rest, chances are you spend much of your time on the go, checking in at Wi-Fi hotspots as you work. For the digital nomad, there are few tools more useful than Google Maps, as you can integrate it perfectly with your 21st century luggage (laptop, smartphone, tablet, perhaps a change of clothes).
Before you head to your next destination, it's simple to log in to Google and save a spatial list of the cafés you want to try, and how to get from one to the next, and finally home to your new AirBnB pad. You can even check the information box on the left to see how busy a café, bar, or library is right now, to be sure of snagging a power point and a comfy chair.
And if you're hoping to catch up with an old friend in town but you both have busy schedules, it's easy to keep them abreast of where you are by sharing your location via Google or other social networks - so they always know where to drop in for a cup of tea and the latest international gossip.
Expedia's great new visual guide offers a full rundown of how it all works, and what else is available - and importantly, from a marketing standpoint, it highlights the various ways in which people are using these tools, which can help guide your thinking on how to increase your business exposure.
Check out the full graphic below for more information.
This post was originally published on Irfan Ahmad's blog.