One of the most popular features of Google has been their mapping programs. Their continued efforts to acquire the best satellite imagery of everywhere has let the average computer user to zoom in on archaeological and geographical sites that, prior to its inception, had been reserved for scientists with satellite imagery at their finger tips.
PCWorld have got in on the act of geographical spotlighting, and have provided a file of Placemarks (just what they sound like… marks that denote places within Google Earth) of the strangest sites found in Google Earth. They describe their finds saying that they’ve found stuff “…from shipwrecks to crop circles, from ads big enough to be read from space to a giant pink bunny nearly the size of a football field…”.
Unluckily, Google’s mapping has accidentally shone a light on locations and objects that they probably shouldn’t have. Back in 2006 an image of a new Chinese nuclear-propelled ballistic missile submarine made its way out on to the internet, sparking a whole new round of questions as to whether their software should be monitored.
The latest craze though, has been the Google Streetview, which, just like the name suggests, provides a streetview look at the world around us. Whereas before you were limited to a bird’s eye view of the world, a growing number of locations (primarily in the United States) are being shown from street level, and provide users the ability to virtually drive through their towns.
It happened slowly at first, but more and more sightings of the Google vans and cars that have been making this possible have been leaking on to the internet. Gizmodo has a pool of photos that expose the vehicles, equipped with video cameras and looking as obtrusive as possible.
It’s a whole new world out there, and we’re getting to see it frame by frame, pixel by pixel, thanks to Google and their never ending quest to make sure every possible thing in our frame of reference, is available, for reference.
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