Links: US election data as KML, Garmin Mac betas, Bird’s Eye how-to

  • On his Census KML Data Visualization blog, Aidan Marcuss has been putting all kinds of US census and electoral data into KML, producing some interesting innovations in the process. For example, Here:

    I’ve also used the TimeSpan element, so you can load both the 109th and 110th Congress files into Google Earth at one time. Using the time slider you can move between the two Congresses – the effect is pretty cool.

  • More Second Life/Google Earth mashing up: 3PointD posts a cool video showing Second Life architect Lordfly Digeridoo doing rapid prototyping in Second Life for a real-world project… and if you look closely, you’ll see that the foundation is a screenshot from Google Earth.
  • Announced on the Garmin blog, Apple Mac betas for the POI Loader and Garmin firmware updaters.
  • It’s Google Developer Day on May 31, in 10 spots around the globe. Alas, that’s too close to the launch of my other project for me to make it, but don’t let that stop you:-). As Frank points out, geo developers will likely be congregating in Mountain View, CA, as that’s near where Where 2.0 takes place May 29-30.
  • Interesting analysis, first by Peter Laudati and then Scoble, on why Microsoft’s mapping projects don’t have the same visibility as Google’s. Laudati moots it’s the lack of a clear name, Scoble thinks it’s the interface. Both are correct, I think — neither the marketing nor the UI are user-centric. But there is a third thing: Google periodically lends its technology to compelling humanitarian causes — Katrina, the Pakistan quake, Darfur… Granted, Microsoft has needed to catch up technology-wise, but if it wants to make its mapping services a media destination, perhaps innovation in using its maps for the greater good is a way to go.
  • How does Microsoft’s Bird’s Eye imagery get taken in Europe, anyway? Here’s a video from the UK’s The Gadget Show. Money quote:

    By the end of 2008 they hope to have covered 900 European cities, that’s everywhere with a population of more than 50,000 people.

    (Via Virtual Earth for Government)

  • Digital Urban plays some more with the Nokia N95, using its GPS abilities to track a train journey, and visualizing the resulting KML in Google Earth.