Alan Eustace, Google's senior vice president of engineering, visited Google's Seattle Engineering Center and talked about his ideas about the future of Google Local.
"There's some huge opportunities for us to put together information and geography in ways that are very interesting. I'd like queries like 'welding class near Kirkland. I'd like that to be beautiful. I'd like that to show a perfect Web page that shows this community college has a class at 12:00 and you click on this link to get it.
If I'm buying a house, I want to know about schools and crime and shopping. Once we have information about locations, I think it's going to be possible for us to organize it."
There are many sites that mix Google Maps with news, videos, photos, statistics. To find information about a location, Google might try to scan sources like Wikipedia or official databases. An easier approach would be to integrate a chat into the map, so you could talk to people from the area you are interested in.
Google Maps + YouTube
Google Maps + Photos
View geographic data on Google Maps