Im trying to learn a language and i think the best way is to build a website ive an idea for after learning all the basics and basically learn new functions as i need them. Currently im learning php and mysql but i think ill need to learn another language/software to do what i need and from reading on the net Java or Actionscript seem like the two most likely for what i need to do.
Heres a rough overview and hopefully you can suggest the best tool/language to do it.
I want to have a website, on that website will be a 3d map something like you see on sim city or cityville, nothing fancy, dont need people walking around just houses, trees, roads, farms, graveyard etc. It will be lots of smaller villages rather than a huge city and you drill down through so you might go to the first map and have 10 zones, you pick a zone and have a bunch of houses in that zone type of thing.
Anyway this map needs to be embedded on the website and you need to be able to pan or move around the map to find what you want. For each map there will be a noticeboard with information that is updated from time to time and if you click on a house for example your taken from the map to a web page with information about that site.
So id like a bit of flexibility in the interactive map, as well as being able to click things i want the ability to possibly search for areas on the map by name, as i mentioned i also want to show notice boards that update with info/images etc
Finally i want to be able to allow people to create buildings on the map, name the building/item, take ownership of that building but again i dont need little people walking around or anything like that just an interactive map with buildings/farms/trees etc
Ideally id love if there was software that allowed you to create the maps with buildings pre-made but i dont think this will allow me the flexibility to allow users create a new building and the noticeboards so i might have to do it from scratch with something like Java or Actionscript. I know its a tough project to start with but im focused and willing to learn. Another idea i had was to just make the 3d image myself with a 3d software program, embed the image and allow panning or scrolling to move around the map and i can use hotspots on the map to enter into buildings but the issue i see with this is will i have the ability to allow people to create a new building automatically. I guess it wouldnt be the end of the world if i had to manually add them as there will be a process of these been approved anyway so people wont expect for them to be created on the spot but rather than having to edit the map each time i would rather it be automatic but if people think this is the best way then i might take this approach.
So any suggestions, whats a good program for creating 3d images of a village, remember you dont need the ability to walk inside the buildings so its just an interactive map and whats the best language and/or tools that i should learn to do this other than PHP and Mysql?
I really appreciate any help, even just pointing me in the right direction would be a great start, also i like the fact that Java is cross platform, dont believe Flash is as i dont think it works on the ipad for example. Are there any drawbacks to using Java, does java normally come pre-installed or do they need to download an applet to use it?