Thursday, June 11, 2009

MAPS: Collaborative Mapping & the Digital

Google Earth
"It isn't surprising that the virtual globe, available as a free download in its basic version, has spread like wildfire. After all, it provides a place to put all the hopelessly scattered information we have collected about our world. Namely, on the earth itself. The digital globe finally depicts everything exactly where it belongs ... Life gradually begins appearing on the globe, allowing users to observe their own planet in full swing. Although the technology is currently limited to traffic cameras and a few gimmicks, it does show the direction digital globes are taking: The point is not just to display more and more data in refined abstractions. At the same time, the artificial globe is becoming less and less complicated. One day, so goes the prediction, it will be identical with the world it depicts."
-- How Google Earth Is Changing Science By Manfred Dworschak

Open Street Maps

OSM 2008: A Year of Edits from ItoWorld on Vimeo.

"Maps define worlds, Rumsey said. Compare the Spanish and British maps of the years of discovery in the New World. Because the Spanish maps and charts were kept as state secrets, their voluminous naming of rivers and mountains and so on didn’t last. The British proudly published all their discovery maps as a proof of ownership. Their names are the ones that still adorn the land."
-- from The Long Now Blog on David Rumsey

"Map Collector David Rumsey shows how his increasing use of digital technologies and the Internet over the past decade has transformed his work as a historical map scholar and collector. Using imaging software, GIS, and popular applications like Google Earth and Second Life, Rumsey has given new life to old maps, both in their dissemination and our ability to analyze and understand them."

"The mapping revolution could, in short, change the way we think of the World Wide Web. We've long spoken of the Web as if it were a place -- with "sites" that we "go to" -- but as places go, it's been a rather abstract, disembodied one. Now that's changing. Geotagging means the Web is slowly being wedded with real space, enhancing physical places with information that can deepen our experiences of them and making computing into a more "continuous" part of our real lives." -- Wade Roush Killer Maps

Volunteer Geographic Information
Michael Goodchild on the significance of volunteer geographic information -- user-generated content, collective intelligence or crowd sourcing -- asserted by individuals, private and empowered, rather than authoritative information from national mapping agencies. Goodchild reminds us of how the somewhat arbitrary use of "America" for the 'New World' by German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller on a map from 1507 popularized the name.

Where 2.0
"The past five years have seen significant changes in the geospatial web. Its importance and functionality have matured—it's not just maps anymore! Where 2.0 takes the exploration of "location aware" even further. Where 2.0 delves into the emerging technologies surrounding the geospatial industry, particularly the way our lives are organized, from finding a restaurant to finding the source of a new millennium plague. Maps are everywhere now, from your desktop to your iPhone to your car to your oil rig, and presented as realistically or as representationally as suits your needs..."

Cyrus Farivar reports back from the Where 2.0 conference on CBC's Spark with Nora Young

Google Maps: An Invasion of Privacy?
"We're moving into a future where not only must you realize the risk that you might be photographed in public, but where it's becoming a near certainty that you will be captured any time you go out ... It's indicative of the direction in which we're moving — where everything occurring anywhere is Google-able."


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