It seems like only yesterday that MapQuest and Yahoo! ruled the roost with their mapping options made available to their users. Flash forward into today, and we have Google and Bing taking center stage.

But as this article on the state of mapping APIs points out, this is fast becoming a young company’s game. And at the head of this movement are the APIs available to take the future of mapping technology forward.

There should be an image here!The future appears fuzzy, though, as to whether or not the open technologies will win or if, instead, the future of mapping will be with solutions like Silverlight. The one constant that I think everyone can agree with, though, is that most of the innovations will be taking open mapping options or available map APIs and running with them. It’s often the new, fresh companies that come up with the latest and greatest ideas.