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Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Maybe I’ve been looking at Web maps for too long. A breathless press release on a new interactive ski trail map made me think I’d see something new at Mt Ruapehu’s website.

Well… it’s a nice, flash-based site. It has 360 panoramas and tools to turn layers on and off, along with real time webcams. And, there are little movies of skiiers and snowboarders. Not being a skiier, I can’t tell if it offers all the info skiiers need, but it looks complete (they even have a layer for rest rooms). Maybe we are at the point where the goal is to put up new content, not explore new ways to interact?

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/31 at 06:03 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share reports on Google’s own mashup of eco-friendly tourist destinations in the U.S. The data is provided by the Earth Day Network. My point here is not to note the mashup - it’s just another mashup - but to note the difference between what Google offers as a means to get folks to use its Google Maps for summer travel, with that of Microsoft’s (the celebrity fave location offering). Both companies used their own resources to build these marketing tools and it’s clear Google is playing up its “Don’t be evil” motto.

Luanne Calvert, creative director at Google, was not shy about the promotion.

This is important to us. One of the big objectives for Google as a corporation is to promote environmental protection…

The goal is to have everyone using Google Maps to get around this summer. The motto is Green not Grim… green can be fun.

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/31 at 05:51 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

A Reuters story, that reads a bit like a press release and offhandedly uses the term “buffer” suggests that Google Earth is not a GIS. This is really subtle and I have to give credit to the folks at Penn or the folks at Reuters who teased this out. Note the term “also” in the third paragraph, suggesting, at least to me, that Google Earth is something “other” than GIS. Frankly, I’m impressed at the suggestion that the two work together but are different.

Geographic Information System (GIS) technology is being used to pinpoint the location of commercial poultry flocks, feed mills and processing plants, said Sherrill Davison, professor of avian medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

The information will be used to help create buffer zones around an infected flock and contain the H5N1 strain when it makes its U.S. appearance.

Since the beginning of the year, experts have also been using Google Earth, which combines satellite imagery, maps and the company’s search engine to span the globe.


by Adena Schutzberg on 05/31 at 05:40 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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