InfoWorld covers upcoming Microsoft efforts to draw users to its Live Search. In the local arena:
In local search, Microsoft is using its Virtual Earth tool for richer results. It can project aerial photographs of places on Virtual Earth’s navigable three-dimensional maps of major cities, said General Manager Erik Jorgensen.
A tool for users to show highlights of a trip, called Collections, will be enhanced so viewers can just click through the trips or passively watch them in a virtual video rather than looking around a map. The maker of a Collection will also be able to upload the virtual video to sites such as YouTube, he said.
Local directions will also be enhanced. Rather than make users enter a starting point, Live Search will offer directions from all the major highways, from which users can choose. As an option, the local search engine will also be able to modify those directions in light of current traffic conditions. Local and mapping features will be rolled out by mid-October, according to the company.