National Geographic talks blogging and maps

National Geographic has an article today about blogs and maps, highlighting—once again—the growing prominence of maps on the webs and the movement towards more map output. However, we're still stuck here wondering when people will become less interested in maps and more interested in having access to the underlying data. Although it's nice that you can create a map easily, there are few sites whose stated objectives are to actually share the data for analysis and further study. It is interesting that the map craze spawned by the availability of raw data and free mapping services may well portend the end of the availability of that raw data in deference to pictorial representations which have little use to those interested in using the data.