Gmapping History & Future



Washington, DC 20050
Originally uploaded by ekai.

The latest example of cool emergent technology is Google Maps rendered with satellite imagery annotated with Flickr notes. Geeks and the geekly inclined are zooming in on neighborhoods where they once lived and are tagging those screen capture images with notes describing historical moments in the geography. Flickr has a group called Memory Maps dedicated to this.

Since I grew up in the DC area, I decided to look around some internationally known locations to see what they look like from the sky. Interesting to note that the White House and the neighboring Old Executive Office Building and Department of Treasury buildings are “sanitized” from the top, for national security reasons I’m sure. Their roofs are represented as blank continuous dull colors with none of the detail you’ll find on other buildings. Some areas, such as the courtyards in the Old Executive, are grossly pixelated. On the other hand, the Pentagon, looks complete with detail. This begs the question, what does it take to get a piece of property obscured from Google’s database? Can I fill out a form and demand that my house be gzapped so no one knows that the grass hasn’t been cut in 3 years or that my meth lab exploded?

As if that wasn’t enough cool, this brilliant individual figured out how to remix Craig’s List housing ads with Google Maps. This is the kind of thing that some bubbleheaded VC would have sunk $30 million into 5 years ago. And now it’s done emergent style with an idea and a little duct tape. Imagine what can happen when there is an open API for all this.

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  • Simon

    Hey Eddie. I just zoomed in the house where you and I lived when we were in Arlington. Kinda spooky. Brings back a lot of memories.

    Remember the two Rottweiler’s going at it in the front yard when we were having breakfast as the passing neighbor’s were walking to the train? Or our nutty roommate yelling from the top window to the police that she can smoke hooch all day long and there’s nothing they can do about it?

    I wonder if that Texas Ranger ever caught up with her after she got out of the Asylum? Guess it doesn’t pay to stalk cops. Who the hell writes to Howard Stern saying that being an escort isn’t as glamorous as it’s made out to be. Ahhh, such fond memories. What a wacko.

    All’s well from downunder. Just back from a nice weekend down at the beach. Been working on a Sunnyvale transfer but I don’t think it’s gonna come off. Maybe next year.

    Cheers,

    Si

  • Simon

    Hey Eddie. I just zoomed in the house where you and I lived when we were in Arlington. Kinda spooky. Brings back a lot of memories.

    Remember the two Rottweiler’s going at it in the front yard when we were having breakfast as the passing neighbor’s were walking to the train? Or our nutty roommate yelling from the top window to the police that she can smoke hooch all day long and there’s nothing they can do about it?

    I wonder if that Texas Ranger ever caught up with her after she got out of the Asylum? Guess it doesn’t pay to stalk cops. Who the hell writes to Howard Stern saying that being an escort isn’t as glamorous as it’s made out to be. Ahhh, such fond memories. What a wacko.

    All’s well from downunder. Just back from a nice weekend down at the beach. Been working on a Sunnyvale transfer but I don’t think it’s gonna come off. Maybe next year.

    Cheers,

    Si

  • Very deductive, my man. I wonder if the Humboldt residents can request the same service ;>

  • Very deductive, my man. I wonder if the Humboldt residents can request the same service ;>

  • Ed(D)

    Eddie,
    How’d you do the mouse over screen tips with the hotspots on your map image? Is it in Macromedia Flash or is it DHTML?

  • Ed(D)

    Eddie,
    How’d you do the mouse over screen tips with the hotspots on your map image? Is it in Macromedia Flash or is it DHTML?

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