Google rolled out a new feature on Google Maps this week that displays instant traffic information for more than 30 major cities in the U.S., InformationWeek reports. Using the new feature, commuters can see up-to-date traffic conditions to help them plan their routes around congested areas. Microsoft and Yahoo also offer live traffic data through their mapping services. Users can search for a specific location by selecting the "traffic" button on Google Maps. When the traffic feature is enabled, major roads will be displayed on a map, marked by red, yellow and green overlays that show the speed at which traffic is moving. Red means the traffic is stop-and-go, yellow means it's moving slowly, and green means the traffic is moving well. Google launched a similar service for mobile devices in July. The combination of a map and live traffic data is known as a mashup, formed by integrating multi-sourced applications or content into a single offering. Traffic mashups and thousands of others that include weather, city information and even crime rates around the country are a growing phenomenon on the Web and are expected to hit the mainstream in the next two years, according to InformationWeek.
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