One of the things I like most about Google is the ability to create useful tools for our users that leverage current products. There's no shortage of ideas, for instance, on how to use Google Maps; here's one we're ready to show you.

If you're like me, you use a mix of recommendations from friends, the phone book, or standing on the corner with your hand in the air (and hoping it isn't raining) when you need to find a taxi, limousine or shuttle service. With Google Ride Finder, you can tell us where you want to find a ride and we'll show you the actual positions of participating vehicles in that area, along with a phone number you can use to contact the fleet operator (e.g., Chicago).

We're just getting started, so forgive us if we don't have your city or ride provider yet; we'll be adding more as they become available. If you're a fleet owner/operator, get in touch with us; we'd love to include your vehicle.

Now I've got to run to catch my ride to the airport.