The Virtual Forbidden City is now live!

You may remember our interview with John Tolva (back in Episode 51) who has worked on some amazing projects with IBM, and now has debuted The Forbidden City: Beyond Space and Time. This project is exactly the kind of things we are working on in our research, and I have been waiting to finally get a chance to see it live.

The virtual Forbidden City is an online virtual world that recreates China’s Forbidden City, the historical home of Chinese emperors in Beijing. It combines some really nice graphics in representing the physical landscape with historically appropriate avatars, such as imperial guards or civil servants. Users can choose their avatar and then begin exploring the Forbidden City. In addition to being able to interact with other users, there is also embedded historical information that help tell the story of the Forbidden City.

I’ve already signed up, but the virtual Forbidden City does have some hardware requirements that my sad old laptop can’t deal with, so I will be downloading the app as soon as we’re back in Morgantown and I will have a more detailed review as soon as I get a chance to really try it out.

Geography Action 2008

Folks, it is getting close! We are mere weeks from the 2008 Geography Awareness Week. Beginning November 16th and continuing through the 22nd it will be time to step up the evangelizing. For those of you who are focused on geospatial technologies don’t forget that GIS Day sits in the middle of week. For details about Geography Awareness Week check out Geography Action 2008 at National Geographic and for GIS Day events in your area. As usual, we will be featuring a series of special content during GAW2008 including an interview with‘s Matt Rosenberg and, if we can get on his schedule, our regular GIS Day guest, Rick Lawson of ESRI.

Also, if you know a store that sells globe costumes send us an email with the details. We are trying to plan our local activities in Morgantown and having someone walk around downtown and on campus in a globe suit plays heavily into the plans 🙂