Working on the election and in GOTV operations I was consistently disappointed with the way yahoo maps and map blast functioned (directions to polling places, neighborhoods to walk, etc.)
The directions were close but they often contained so much gibberish and unnecessary turns that each map you printed need a good review from someone that really knew the area. The problem was that even if you really knew the area getting your bearings, zooming in and out, and manipulating the map itself online (before printing) was a herky jerky process.
Paper maps just became quicker reference points and easier to ork with. It is not so much an issue if you are working with just one map but when you need to kick out 200 maps in a day and provide directions to vans of volunteers the online the yahoo and mapblast tools sucked.
Now Google has a new tool that appears more mappy and less techy. Check it out.
Draggable maps – you can click and drag Google maps to view adjacent sections; no more long waits while new areas download.
Integrated Local search results – Google Maps integrates local search results from Google Local. So to find a pizza place, simply type in "pizza in San Jose", and pizza places appear at various locations on your map, with phone numbers for each location on the right side of the page.
Turn-by-turn directions – Type in an address and Google Maps plots the route for you, displaying it visually on the map itself, together with step-by-step directions for getting there (or back from there). When you click on one of these steps (say, "turn left"), you see a floating bubble with a magnified view of the area mentioned in the directions.
Keyboard shortcuts – You can use arrow keys to pan left, right, up and down. The Page Up, Page Down, Home and End keys let you pan out even wider. And you can zoom in with the plus ( ) key and zoom out with the minus (-) key.