Links: Navigator, Mobile Street View, Science cartograms

  • Navigator: Valery Hronusov has come out with yet another Google Earth-centric application — and this time, it’s free. Navigator takes your GPS device as input and displays a myriad of details regarding individual satellite positions, signal-to-noise ratios, error estimates, course, speed, etc… In other words, it works like your GPS on steroids, and it uses Google Earth as the map. For Windows only, so I haven’t managed to check it out, but don’t wait for me.
  • Google Maps for Mobile gets Street View: So announces Google Mobile Blog. Not for your iPhone, though. Perhaps an update is in the works — or can we expect future updates to come to Android first? For a sneak peek at what Google Maps for Android will look like, Mapperz has a video of a demonstration at the Google Developer Day held in London Sept 16. Alasdair Allan also has a report on “what’s new in geo” at the event.
  • US Science spending cartograms: Science magazine reporter Declan Butler has been geographically visualizing different science indicators across US states using cartograms, much like the ones we’ve gotten to know at WorldMapper. Declan used the open-source Java tool called Scapetoad to make his, which is based on the same (Gastner/Newman) algorithm WorldMapper uses. WorldMapper, BTW, will soon be releasing a book of its pretty cartograms, reports The Map Room.
  • Swiss Google Earth blog: Swiss Earth is Ronald Sautebin’s new blog about his country as seen in Google Earth. With part of the Google geo team recruited from Switzerland with the purchase of Endoxon in 2006, the country is certainly not short-shrifted in Google Earth. (In French)
  • Live English Channel Ships: KML of real-time ship positions in the English Channel, brought to you by EarthNC and English Channel Ship Movements Website. I didn’t know you have to keep to the right — did you?
  • Hurricane Ike imagery compared: Google Lat Long Blog points to KML overlays of post-hurricane Ike imagery Google has made available. Over on the Earth is Square, Chad compares it to the imagery provided directly by NOAA and finds NOAA’s imagery better.
  • Taking servers to the seas: Times Online reports that Google is mooting putting server farms out to sea, where they can use seawater for cooling and waves as an energy source. Geographic Travels with Catholicgauze wonders whether this could also be a way to avoid tax and censorship laws. As for property taxes, sure, why not avoid them, but when it comes to evading sovereignty, then I think you need to be a whole lot further offshore than the maximum 11 kilometers mooted in the Times article. Further issues: The data cables would have to hit land somewhere, which means regulation there — and if you truly were to be out in international waters, then who is going to protect Google’s servers? Gives the term ‘computer-piracy’ a whole new meaning. (And, yes, similarities to the giant off-shore city in Snow Crash have been noted.)
  • Drupal 6 + Google Earth: Dan Karran has updated the KML module for the Drupal content management system, with help from Robin Rainton. New feature: Caching of KML feeds and custom POI markers.
  • State of the Map in India: Calcutta’s The Telegraph vents its frustration at continued anachronistic regulations that require all maps published in India to be subject to a lengthy “authenticatation” process, meaning that borders must conform to the government’s political stance, even if they do not portray the situation on the ground. (Via All Points Blog)
  • Search SIMBAD via Google Sky (web): SIMBAD is the most extensive database of deep sky objects out there. In my review of Microsoft World Wide Telescope, I noted that you could do SIMBAD searches from within WWT, whereas you couldn’t in Google Sky. Now lets you search SIMBAD and see the result in Google Sky (web). (Via Google Maps Mania)

I’m flying to Sweden tonight unexpectedly, as that bout of pneumonia I had in the spring has come back for seconds. Best to fix it properly this time — i.e. not in an Egyptian hospital. We’ll see if this means more time for blogging or less:-)

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