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Todays Tech

Joost scores first deal with major broadcaster, CBS CBS signs a deal with Joost, the P2P “Internet TV” platform created by the Skype guys that is all the rage now.

New Google Maps Feature – 2.5D Buildings Google is yet again adding features to Google Maps which bring it closer to Google Earth.

Microsoft Qualifies ‘Vista Capable’ Label

Dual Booting Windows XP with Windows Vista How to dual-boot Vista with XP – step-by-step guide with screenshots.

Optimizing Your FeedBurner Feed How to keep FeedBurner from out ranking your website.

Reported OEM BIOS Hacks How Microsoft intends to respond to the hacks that attempt to exploit thier OEM BIOS based activation.

Sprung: First (official) look at the Xbox 360 Spring Dashboard Update!

Twitter developer: Rails performance blows Says Python is faster.

A snooper snooped He said, she said, Valleywag style.

Major Nelson talks Guitar Hero downloads, Halo 3 I know nothing.

TV Tonic: video for Media Center PCs Scoble shows us how to watch web videos on your tv using Tv Tonic and your Xbox 360.

Isle of Rhodes Site: Unlock GoW 2 HD Mode! New Countdown!

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - April 13, 2007 at 3:01 am

Categories: Tech News, Windows Vista   Tags:

Google Earth and the Crisis in Darfur

Okay, the other day we had politicians complaining that Google was showing old images of New Orleans in their Google Earth program, so, how about this turn around in another region. Google Earth is marking atrocities in the Darfur region of Sudan with high resolution satellite images of the region to document destroyed villages, displaced people and refugee camps. The icons displayed in Google earth represent destroyed villages with flames and the refugee camps with tents, so that when users zoom in Darfur on a computer screen, the icons make it look like the region is on fire. Clicking on the flame icons will open a window with the village’s name and statistics on the extent of destruction. Google enhanced the resolution for certain areas of the region so that users can zoom in to see the burnt remnants of houses. Google says it will periodically update the images. Wow. Download Google Earth from the following link,

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum today joined with Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) to unveil an unprecedented online mapping initiative aimed at furthering awareness and action in the Darfur region of Sudan. Crisis in Darfur, enables more than 200 million Google Earth? mapping service users worldwide to visualize and better understand the genocide currently unfolding in Darfur. The Museum has assembled content?photographs, data and eyewitness testimony?from a number of sources that are brought together for the first time in Google Earth. This information will appear as a Global Awareness layer in Google Earth starting today.

Crisis in Darfur is the first project of the Museum’s Genocide Prevention Mapping Initiative that will over time include information on potential genocides allowing citizens, governments and institutions to access information on atrocities in their nascent stages and respond.

Crisis in Darfur content comes from a range of sources, the U.S. State Department, non-governmental organizations, the United Nations, individual photographers, and the Museum. The high-resolution imagery in Google Earth enables users to zoom into the region to view more than 1,600 damaged and destroyed villages, providing visual, compelling evidence of the scope of destruction. The remnants of more than 100,000 homes, schools, mosques and other structures destroyed by the janjaweed militia and Sudanese forces are clearly visible. Humanitarian organizations and others now have a readily accessible tool for better understanding the situation on the ground in Darfur. Source: U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and Google Join in Online Darfur Mapping Initiative

They have also created another mapping project on the Holocaust, the Museum is using Google Earth to map Holocaust sites with historic content from their collections. More info on the Holocaust project available here. A News.com article brings up an interesting point,

“This mirrors the type of things that news organizations deal with: deciding how much resources to spend on an issue and what you cover,” said Steve Jones, a professor of communications at the University of Illinois at Chicago. “It raises the question of what their responsibility is to decide what to cover.” Source: Google Earth focuses on Sudan atrocities

Google has decided they are going to index all of the World’s information, it doesn’t matter what it is, books, maps, satellite images, so they should have an internal organization that handles the public since they are showing the information to them. They should be held to a higher standard of operation if they are going to become the gatekeepers of the Earth’s knowledge and data.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - April 11, 2007 at 6:44 pm

Categories: Google   Tags: ,

Microsoft Updates Live Maps Adds GeoRSS Support

Microsoft has released a new version of their Live Maps program, with this being the sixth different update since it was first released in July 7, 2005. Listed among the updates are bug fixes, performance improvements, enhancements, GeoRSS publishing of Collections, which would allow you to include a special markup to encode the geographic information of every item in the collection, area calculations and more. GeoRSS was just released in the Google Earth program as well, so we should see some great collections, google earth layers and all kinds of great add-ons.

You can now read reviews of businesses entered by other users, as well as adding your own ratings and reviews for any business in Live Maps. To get started do a search for businesses in the Yellow Pages like this search for Book stores, restaurants and Supermarkets. Click on one of the listings to bring up its details page, like the one shown below for Bailey-Coy Books. There you can see the average user rating for the business and page through reviews previously entered by others. We’ve partnered with sites like Judy’s Book to feed thousands of quality reviews into the system already. Of course you can contribute your own Rating and Review right there on the details page with the ‘Write Review’ button. Had a good experience with a physical therapist? Tell your neighbors about it. Tired of the over hyped bar in Belltown that’s too crowded, serves watered down drinks and takes a 10 dollar cover weeknights even though every other place on the block is free? Call em out on it..

RSS is a family of standard formats used to publish frequently updated content, such as blogs or news feeds. You can now subscribe to an RSS feed for a Collection so that you can be kept up to date as the author of the Collection adds new items. When you subscribe to a Collection?s feed, your RSS reader automatically receives updates as the author makes changes. Source: New Version of Live Maps Launches!

I can see this becoming a great feature on Live Maps and Google Earth, but I have no way to monetize Live Maps, yet, so I will probably work on Google Earth instead.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - April 4, 2007 at 5:13 am

Categories: Live, Ramblings   Tags: , , ,

Google Updates the Google Pack

Google has recently updated their Google Pack, the free set of software that anyone can download and use, it includes programs like Google Earth, Picasa, the photo organizer, Ad-Aware, Google Desktop, Google Talk, Google Toolbar, Skype and many more. They have added Symantec’s Norton Security Scan and PC Tools’ Spyware Doctor Starter Edition, both tools will help you protect your computer from viruses and malware, and both of which are free. They also updated their free photo screensaver, it will now display photo feeds, like the ones available from Flickr, and will show a constant stream of photos from the web. This is great for family members who live far away, and can’t see your kids, etc, it will allow them to see whatever photos you upload to your photo stream.

Google Pack makes it easy to setup and protect your PC, and now we’ve added two new applications to make your PC even safer: Symantec’s Norton Security Scan, which detects and removes viruses, and PC Tools’ Spyware Doctor Starter Edition, a top-rated anti-spyware utility. Both are free and include automatic protection updates with no paid subscription required.

We’ve also substantially updated our screensaver. Now you can turn your computer into a digital picture frame that displays pictures from photo feeds continuously updated streams of photos from the web. Many of your favorite photo-sharing sites support them already, so it’s easy to keep in touch with your friends and family this way. Source: Google Pack cures the PC blues

More info on the Google Pack available here. Download the Google Pack by clicking this link,

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - April 3, 2007 at 4:31 pm

Categories: Google, Screen Savers   Tags: , ,

Google Updates New Orleans Satellite Imagery

Google updated the satellite imagery associated with the Gulf Coast region Sunday because of complaints from politicians that they were airbrushing history by not showing the region’s post Katrina images. Boy, you would think our government could find something more to be concerned about that whether the satellite images that Google is showing on Google Earth or Google Maps are up to date or not.

A related article run by the Associated Press at the tail end of last week outlined the geographic changes implemented to the popular map engine. This then subsequently led to a U.S. House Subcommittee pointing accusatory fingers at Google with regard to “airbrushing history” for the sake of relaying a conveniently untouched depiction of New Orleans, Louisiana, and the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Source: Google?s wrist slapped for ?airbrushing history?

Google addressed this on their blog with the following statements,

In 2005, shortly after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, a very motivated group of volunteers at Google worked with NOAA, NASA, and others to post updated imagery of the affected areas in Google Maps and Google Earth as quickly as possible. This data served as a useful reference for many people — from those interested in understanding what had happened, to friends and families checking on the status of loved ones and property, to rescuers and relief workers. Shortly after the event, we received a voicemail thanking us for the role Google Earth played in guiding rescuers to stranded victims.

Several months later, in September 2006, the storm imagery was replaced with pre-Katrina aerial photography of much higher resolution as part of a regular series of global data enhancements. We continued to make available the Katrina imagery, and associated overlays such as damage assessments and Red Cross shelters, on a dedicated site (earth.google.com/katrina.html). Our goal throughout has been to produce a global earth database of the best quality — accounting for timeliness, resolution, cloud cover, light conditions, and color balancing. Source: About the New Orleans imagery in Google Maps and Earth

Google Earth is a great program, but I fail to see the need for politicians to get involved in whether Google is showing the latest images or not. One would think they would be more worried about updating the images provided by the US Geological Survey. Download the latest version of Google Earth by clicking on this link,

1 comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - at 2:02 pm

Categories: Google   Tags: , , ,

Google Maps Close Up

Google Maps picture
This is pretty cool right here, I’ve never been able to get so close to the earth using Google Earth, but apparently, using Google Maps, you can zoom in pretty close in some areas. That one guy actually looks like he is looking at the satellite. Via Shawn Hogan. Click this link to download Google Earth,

Look at it in Google Maps here for a REALLY detailed image from space.

Of course we’ll probably find out that Google uses images from planes as well.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - March 27, 2007 at 7:32 pm

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Google Maps API adds KML and GeoRSS Support

Google Maps has added some cool new formats to their API, KML and GeoRSS. Currently, they support points, lines, polygons, styles, icons, and network links (without view-based refresh) in the KML files, and they will be adding ground overlays, screen overlays, folders, and visibility soon. More information can be found in the Google Maps API documentation. So now you can create a KML file using Google Earth and load it up in Google Maps, so you can see exactly where they are.

To start we now support GeoRSS as a data format for geographic content in Google Maps. We want to enable users to create data in whatever format is most convenient for them, and feel that by supporting both KML and GeoRSS we can enable a wider variety of people and applications to contribute content to Google Maps. We’ve built support for the Simple, GML, and W3C Geo encodings of GeoRSS — all you have to do is enter the full URL of a GeoRSS file into the Maps query box to load the file. For example, take a look at SlashGeo’s GeoRSS on Google Maps.

Most importantly, we’ve extended support for displaying geographic data — both KML and GeoRSS — into the Google Maps API. Now in addition to programatically adding content to a Maps API site, you can create your content as KML or GeoRSS and load it into the Map with a simple function call. This means that the more than 1 million KML files that are available from all over the web can easily be mashed up with the map on your site. For example, you can add some vacation photos from Japan with the following code:

var gx = new GGeoXml(“http://kml.lover.googlepages.com/my-vacation-photos.kml”);
map.addOverlay(gx);

This makes it easier for API sites to maintain content in a flexible format that can be accessed via the API or in a number of other tools directly, and makes it simpler to create a rich API site with declarative content, instead of a lot of code. Source: KML and GeoRSS Support Added to the Google Maps API

The O’reilly Radar site, says this will help KML become an OGC standard, and they expect Google to soon accept GeoRSS as a layer, and that they will probably start showing up in Google Earth’s web search.

Additionally, KML is on its way to becoming an OGC standard (and as you can see from this Slashgeo poll it’s a popular idea). It’s great for them to begin accepting this other OGC standard as they begin that process.

I expect this means that GeoRSS will be accepted as a Google Earth layer soon and that GeoRSS will start showing up in Google Earth’s Web Search. This would provide even further incentive content sites to join the likes of Flickr (as an aside compare with Flickr’s map feature with a Google Map consuming the same feed – I think Flickr’s is cleaner, but it does not have Google’s flexibility) and Upcoming by exporting in GeoRSS (as if today’s announcement wasn’t enough). WordPress bloggers can start using the GeoPress plugin (Radar post) right away (I already do on the Ignite Seattle blog — it’s very easy to use). Source: Google is Supporting GeoRSS

Lots of stuff coming out for Google Earth lately, be sure to check some of the other articles below.

2 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - March 23, 2007 at 9:14 pm

Categories: Google   Tags: , , , ,

Wi-Fi Mesh and Google Earth

It must be Google Earth day around here, lots of interesting stuff I have found so far today. Download Google Earth by clicking this link,

Skypilot has integrated SkyControl with Google Earth mapping service, and using the GPS positioning capabilities they can provide automatic and dynamic mesh network visualization, which means they can actually see which nodes are functioning, etc, so they can see power outages, and much more. This will also allow them to visualize all of the networks before they actually install them, so they can be sure of complete coverage. Here is the press release.

Here is what they had to say at GigaOm has to say,

Indian network operator LifeStyle Networks relied on Google Earth to plot and rollout a 20 square kilometer network for 500,000 residents in Mumbai using Strix hardware, according to Light Reading (LifeStyle plans to cover the rest of the city in 6 months). The company used Google Earth to decide where the radios should be placed so that the whole city could be covered with a signal, and then used GPS-based location data of the hardware to create an online network map over Google Earth.

The article says the company can feed info from Strix?s network management software into Google Earth to see the details of the connections of the nodes ? if they?re live and if any radios are not operating correctly. Source: Google Earth Meet Wi-Fi Mesh

Meraki, who use Google Maps for it’s dashboard management tools, says you can just enter it into Google Maps to see your network, and they are going to allow you to see your network in real time by exporting that data into Google Earth in the next release. That would be some pretty cool Google Earth Layers.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - March 22, 2007 at 8:12 pm

Categories: Google   Tags: , , ,

Google Earth Tutorials and Help

If you haven’t looked around there is all kinds of stuff available for Google Earth, Google has some great tutorials, help, support, forums and more. I’m going to list as many as I can here, if you know of a good resource for Google Earth, drop it in a comment and I will add it to this post. Download Google Earth by clicking this link, to get the latest version of Google Earth.

Google Earth Tutorials from Google:
Navigating on the Earth

Searching for Locations and Businesses

Marking Locations

Making Movies in Google Earth Pro and EC

Here is the Google Earth User Guide, which lists everything you can do while using Google Earth.

The Google Earth FAQ This is the list of frequently asked questions.

The Google Earth Help Center.

Having trouble with Google Earth? Google Earth troubleshooting.

Check out the huge Google Earth Community from keyhole.

You can check out the Using Google Earth Blog.

And you can check out everything we have posted about Google Earth and all of the Google Earth Layers we have listed.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - at 7:59 pm

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Updated Google Earth Layers

Google has some new and some updated layers for Google Earth, and they are already in Google Earth, top that. If you really haven’t explored Google Earth, you can find some great content that is already there waiting for you by browsing through some of the available layers and other cool stuff they have listed there. Download Google Earth by clicking this link,

A new folder called “Global Awareness” under “Featured Content”:
World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Conservation Projects
Appalachian Mountaintop Removal

New Zealand Roads
National Geographic expanded content: now includes Australia, New Zealand, Oceania, Poles

Updated content in:
Geographic Web: Wikipedia
Geographic Web: Best of Google Earth Community
Featured Content: Yelp Reviews
Featured Content: Tracks4Africa
Populated Places, Islands and Borders
Google Earth Community
Worldwide Panoramas
Volcanoes
Digital Globe Source: New and Updated Layers – 10th March 2007

Here are all of our articles tagged Google Earth and Google Earth Layers.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Jimmy Daniels - at 7:42 pm

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