This is an ongoing open source project based in the UK that I read about on Mappinghacks.com,
whose main goal is to provide free geographic data to anyone. openstreetmap was basically started because geographic data is not free in many countries, unlike sources like the National Map here in the US.
If you are interested in open source web mapping projects, check out openstreetmap.org
Wired has an interesting article/commentary about how online maps are changing the way we interface our entire lives. I think the next to the last sentance sums up the concerns nicely… “That’s the SimCity trap, emphasizing spatial relationships over more intimate, human considerations.”
Google announced today that Google Maps is no longer in beta and has been merged with Google’s local search technology. It is now known as Google Local and is now found at http://local.google.com/
Using Panoramio, you can browse photos from different places in the world or add your own. They don’t have a lot of photos yet, but a cool site.
Check out Panoramio here
This free game uses Google Earth to play a kind of geocaching, where you launch the game from within Google Earth and follow the clues to various location checkpoints. If you find the envelope “hidden somewhere on Earth, you will advance to the Big Game.”
I haven’t played it myself yet, but I may give it a try in between actually trying to get my GIS work done.
For a basic tutorial, check out the Earth Contest website
Via Ogle Earth
One avenue of research in geospatial technologies and geovisualization is immersive Virtual Reality. One of the biggest issues is how to simulate moving through a real landscape. The VirtuSphere rotates as the user walks in any direction while wearing the head mounted display that delivers the virtual environment. I’m sure it’s not the only apparatus out there, but the fact that it’s portable and doesn’t require the extensive structure of a CAVE or other projection-based system is kinda cool
If you’d like to see some pictures and demo video, check out the VirtuSphere website
Satellite images show glowing sea. It’s always interesting when science can help confirm ghost tales. The real question is this… is it really bacteria or the ghosts of souls lost at sea? We may never know…
I have gone back and forth between using an aggregator (currently SharpReader) and just going to the web sites of my various sites. The great thing about an aggregator is that you don’t have to worry about wandering from page to page, folks can send you RSS links or OPMLs for you to import and check out, and you can group your different areas of interest into groups. The problem I have is that I don’t connect as well with the information that I am looking at. I am just as likely to delete a post in the aggregator that I would read every word of on the web page. I am not sure if this is a case of experience or what.
To bring it back to something we talked about on the podcast, I see the aggregator as a space, whether it is SharpReader or MyYahoo, which I have little connection to and therefore seem to have little connection to the content that I view there. The individual websites then are analogous to cyber-places where I have had interactions with the site design, the content creators, and, heaven forbid, the advertisers. I think this has a little to do with the story that each site or cyber-place sets up from post to post. An odd comparison, but one that I am sure a geographer of cyberspace has mentioned. In the end I will keep using my aggregator, but I will pop into a site every now and then just to look around even though I have probably read all of the posts on the site…
On the lighter side today, there is finally vindication for anyone jealous over physical geography getting all the good movie plots (The Day After Tomorrow anyone?)…
It’s GPS! The Movie!.
Plot (no pun intended) summary: A group of adventure seeking college kids embark on a GPS treasure hunt in the Northwest wilderness. They are led to believe they will find two million dollars in cash. When they arrive at the treasure location they find what appears to be a grave.
DigitalGlobe just announced their plans to launch 2 new imaging satellites, WorldView I and WorldView II, with WorldView I scheduled to launch no later than 2006 and WorldView II no later than 2008.
Check out the details at the DigitalGlobe website or read the press release at Geoplace.com