Thursday, April 26, 2007

Whole Earth Interfaces

After paying $79 for a whole earth interface application four years ago and forking over $49 a year later and $39 the year after that, I finally downloaded Google Earth for free and kicked my paying habit. Such a nice raging debate over whether the world will pay more attention to critical whole Earth system data sets now that they can map data visually to an interactive earth accessible over the Web.

The pale blue dot syndrome, as Carl Sagan calls it, comes to your home PC. Just look how vulnerable our sweet little planet looks floating out there all by its lonesome. Of course, the world disappears under the ocean on 2/3 of the surface. That's silly, eh? Ocean data sets will turn out to be the real important ones as they become more and more available. El Nino. La Nina. Driving forces that make winners and losers of communities on land. Thankfully, we have two competing products already. One starting with scientific data and the other with more recognizable data (aerial photography of city flyovers). How excellent they've covered all of Indiana! Now, if only you could launch other applications from these planetary starting points. Hmmmmmm. Now there's a lot of potential in *that*, for sure.

Some fifth entry links:

nasa world wind earth viewer
google earth: home page
microsoft's: attempt

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