I want one! It’s a multi-touch spherical display that you can make for around $1,000. Oddly enough for such a high tech device, it’s got a bit of a steampunk vibe to it. The first example they use is the obvious Google Earth example, but they do show using it in other contexts. I’m not convinced the photo viewer or music making device really needs a globe surface. If you’re interested in making your own, the directions for building one can be found here. WARNING: The directions aren’t exactly the simplest to follow and I’d imagine there’s a lot of winging it involved.
A recent post on the GIS and Science blog noted that submissions are being accepted for the 26th volume of the ESRI Map Book. If you have a map made with ESRI products then you can submit your map for consideration by the end of Geography Awareness Week, Friday, November 19 at 5:00PM PST.
If you have attended the ESRI International User Conference then you probably have a copy of one of the Map Books gracing your shelf, and it is (in my opinion) the best part of the SWAG bag that you get with your registration. If you have not had a chance to check out one of the hard copies, however, you can access volumes 1 and 20-25 online. The online version provides descriptions of maps along with full views of the maps along with PDF versions of the pages from the map book. I have been using the Map Books as examples in my Intro to Cartography class to show the wide range of design approaches.
It’s a project we’ve been excited for ever since we first heard about it, and was great to be able to interview some of the Geospatial Revolution Project team, so it’s great to be able to post that Episode 1 is now live on the Geospatial Revolution Project website!
The full episode is jut over 13 minutes, but it’s also broken up into smaller videos via YouTube for those who can’t stream the whole thing. The team have also made the episode video shareable, so spread the word and to get you started, here’s Chapter 1 of Episode 1:
I admit it, I love steampunk mods. If I had lots of spare time, and a little cash, I’d love to try my hand at creating a few cool gadgets myself. But in the meantime, I will have to be content to admire the handiwork of others, like the project John Knight is showing off at Maker Faire Detroit. Dubbed the “Electromagnetic Geospatial Globe and Remote View with Obligatory Goggles”, it’s Google Earth meets steampunk, with Google Earth running on a tablet, and controlled by the cool brass globe outfitted with RFID tags. Better than me trying to describe it, check out this video:
BBC News has a great graphic showing the fastest supercomputers around the world, sorting them by Country (where they are located), speed, OS (Linux in a landslide), application, processor manufacturer, and system manufacturer (IBM has more but Cray has faster). It is pretty interesting to see all of this information, though I would like to see a comparison between these supercomputer numbers and the total computing power behind a Google, Amazon, or Microsoft cloud system. In the geospatial arena, while it is nice to have the supercomputing muscle behind global, 3D, or large network models, most of our daily activities take place on a smaller scale that can run locally or across copper and still perform admirably. But that doesn’t mean we wouldn’t like to have a supercomputer in the closet for those special occasions.
I say that we should have more clothing that incorporates navigation aids.
While I continue my research in the area of immersive virtual worlds and serious gaming, I have also been doing a lot of work recently in the area of digital cities, and trying to implement the idea of a “smart” 3D city or town landscape that can be used as a visualization and collaboration tool for municipal management and planning. Once again, an IBM project has grabbed my attention by combining serious gaming and digital cities into one cool project: CityOne. Today I saw a press release announcing the CityOne project, a SimCity-like game using real world data that will be designed to bring together players of the game to help work through and solve real problems facing cities around the world. IBM will be introducing CityOne at Agility@Work Zone at Impact2010 in Las Vegas this week (this is the IBM software conference for business and IT, not to be confused with another conference called IMPACT 2010, which some blogs and sites have linked to by mistake)
Check out the CityOne preview:
“To see a world in a grain of sand” – William Blake’s lyrical words take on a new meaning when you watch this video of IBM researchers demonstrating their new nanomill technology, which uses a tiny silicon tip to carve out objects and features as small as 15 nanometers. While it’s probably not going to revolutionize map-making, the nanomill can be used for numerous high-precision applications in electronics, optics, and medical research.
From the IBM press release, the demonstration includes a “Complete 3D map of the world measuring only 22 by 11 micrometers was “written” on a polymer. At this size, 1,000 world maps could fit on a grain of salt. In the relief, one thousand meters of altitude correspond to roughly eight nanometers (nm). It is composed of 500,000 pixels, each measuring 20 nm2, and was created in only 2 minutes and 23 seconds.”
Saw this whimsical little video on Gizmodo, and had to share. In Japan, everything is cooler, and Google Street View is no exception!