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Mac-ImageMap is free imagemapping application that can run both as a CGI as well as an ACGI application. To run it in either mode you just need to change its name from imagemap.cgi to imagemap.acgi.

Mac-Imagemap supports the standard region definitions (oval, rectangle, polygon), but it also supports the point region. You will have to edit your .map files by hand to include this feature since WebMap nor Hyper Mapedit support this region type.

Like MapServe, Mac-Imagemap has been redesigned to work hand-in-hand with WebSTAR. Specifically, it will work through WebSTAR's ACTION handler. Using this feature can insure that more people will have access to your imagemaps since they will not be hindered by the "CERN proxy bug" that incorrectly encodes dollar signs ($) of URLs into %24. Using the ACTION handler also makes writing your HTML simpler and may eliminate the need for an imagemap.config file.

The most difficult part about using Mac-Imagemap is writing its configuration file. When running Mac-Imagemap as a CGI or ACGI application, a configuration file is necessary. Even though the documentation is verbose and plentiful, the non-standard format of the configuration file is difficult to decipher. Furthermore, this configuration is married to the host computer; you can not create a generic configuration file and move it from server to server. This is not a huge problem, just something you have to keep in mind.

If you are low on RAM, then Mac-Imagemap supports a StayOpen attribute in its configuration file. Consequently, you can configure Mac-Imagemap to quit after it is done processing. Mac-Imagemap also supports a test mode for new maps and the ability to include the email address of the server's maintainer in error messages.

Mac-Imagemap functions as advertised. Once you learn how to interpret the imagemap.config file, you will be pleased with its results. Learning this file's parameters is well worth the $20 you might spend on MapServe.

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This page was first published on September 26, 1995. Feel free to send comments.