Archive for the ‘Online Geography’ Category


Monday, October 8th, 2012

Here’s something free from Microsoft for you to check out:  Zoom.It which enables you to view and share high resolution imagery.   It’s hard to explain exactly what this means so it’s better that you just click on one of the links below to experience it first hand.  It does require the Silverlight download from Microsoft and it might not run on all computers.

Extreme Panoramic Imaging Project at Yosemite National Park in California, USA – Make sure you use the roller on your mouse to zoom all the way into the map and then into the panoramic photos that appear above each half circle.

National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Charts – Try zooming in and moving around there charts of the whole world to experience the depth and volume of information that can be contained in one of these.

Hard Rock’s Memorabilia Collection – Zoom and pan your way through this amazing collection of goodies from the legends of rock and roll.

How would you like to make your own dynamic high resolution photo that people could pan and zoom through online?  It’s actually pretty easy provided you have someplace on the internet where you can paste an image.  Then copy the image’s exact web address and take it to this site (Zoom.It) where all you have to do it paste in the address and wait a couple of seconds.

For more information about how this technology works check out the links to Windows Azure and Microsoft Silverlight on the Zoom.It About page.


The American Revolution

Saturday, July 3rd, 2010

If you’d like to delve into some American history this Independence Day the Nation Park Service might have the website you’re looking for.  Pulling from their vast historical resources, this one website has a great collection of stories, timelines and biographies from the Revolutionary War.  Of course they also offer information about visiting the various parks throughout the nation that have connections to the Revolution.

Whether you are doing serious research or just looking to understand the history of the United States of America, the National Park Service has a website for you to check out! 

The American Revolution – Lighting Freedom’s Flame

Texas Border Watch

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

Bored?  Looking for something to do?  How about taking some time to patrol the Texas border?  The Texas Border Sherif’s Coalition would love to have your help as a “Virtual Texas Deputy”.  Using a $2 million dollar grant from the Governor of Texas they contracted a private company called Blue Servo to create a website where ordinary people can log on and watch the border using strategically placed webcams.  Once you set-up an account and log in you can choose the camera(s) you’d like to watch and begin your “patrol”.  Each camera comes with instructions on what to look for and how to report anything suspicious  annonymously.  Here are some examples of what they’ve seen.

Give it a try!  Live the dream of being a Virtual Texas Deputy:

The Cost to Drive

Sunday, May 16th, 2010

Do you love to drive? If you do then you know that it can get pretty expensive to drive everywhere. features a “galculator” which can give you a pretty good estimate of the cost to drive just about anywhere in North America.  The website will also gives you a route map that includes gas stations along the way with their current fuel prices.  And for more information about getting the most out of your car’s fuel efficiency check out

Try today to get “full visability inot the cost of car travel”

Flickr Vision

Tuesday, November 17th, 2009 was created by David Troy in 2007 and offers a more passive way to explore Flickr.comFlickrVision allows you to watch as pictures are posted to Flickr and geo-located on a map of the earth.  The website was created using GeoRSS which is also used in other dynamic online maps such as Google Maps and Yahoo Maps.   This is only one of David Troy’s many projects, the most recent of which is which allows you to see the geo-locatio from which twitter messages are being poste.

Google Earth

Thursday, August 20th, 2009

im07Google Earth is a free download from Google that offers a unique, interactive, dynamic globe that’s created using satellite photos and electronic data from all kinds of resources.  Lets say you want to check out a friend’s new house in Washington D.C. By typing in the address you can zoom right in on a satellite photo of their house that you can then move around.  You can search their neighborhood for restaurants, schools, libraries, gas stations, whatever you want.  But that’s not all, next you could add layers to the satellite photo that would tell you things like voting district borders, real time traffic speeds, crime statistics, all kinds of stuff.  You can even find YouTube videos, streaming webcams and photos of neighborhoods.  Try checking out the 3-D renderings of whole cities and, if you go to places like the Grand Canyon you can view the terrain in 3-D.

It’s an amazing integration of information in an easy to use interactive format that has to be experienced.   If you need some help getting started try searching YouTube for “Google Earth Tutorials.”

For a little fun don’t forget to try the flight simulator that’s in the program.  Once you’re in Google Earth press:  CTRL+ALT+A to access it.

Free Rice

Saturday, August 15th, 2009 was created by John Breen who also created and The Hunger Site. These sites are dedicated to increasing awareness of worldwide hunger and giving people a way to make a difference. At you can practice your English vocabulary through a game and for each question you get right you donate 20 grains of rice to the hungry.  Don’t like vocabulary?  Just click change subject and try artgeography, chemistry, mathematics, or something else.   The web site, and the rice is paid for by the advertisements that appear on the bottom of the screen. So click away!

Does this all sound too good to be true? Check it out at,,, or


Thursday, August 13th, 2009 is a website that offers lots of local information, including access to traffic cameras in cities all around North America and even a few cities around the world. has several projects underway with this mapping system that combines Google Maps, live traffic cams as well as Yahoo Traffic, Weather radar, local news, Fandango movies, even local subway maps where possible. An amazing experiment in combining multiple forms of data into an integrated and functional website. Keep checking back as they develop more and more information for cities like: New York, Washington, Las Vegas, Toronto, Los Angeles, Dallas, Boston, London, and Dublin. Here’s a link to all the cities they cover:

This site is one to watch for future developments!

The Skyscraper Page

Monday, August 10th, 2009

im02The offers a unique collection of diagrams of over 21,000 skyscrapers from cities all around the world.  The diagrams are made by over 600 contributers and they are displayed in a variety of ways.  You could view the world’s tallest buildings or the tallest buildings that are under construction.  Check out all the skyscrapers in a single city like:  New York, Tokyo, London, Chengdu, Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, Dubai, Las Vegas, or any other city in the world.  Did you know where most of the world’s tallest buildings were built?

This is an amazing website and even if you have absolutely no interest in architecture, anyone who’s ever seen a skyscraper in any city can appreciate a chance to see them lined up by size for once.  If you are an architecture enthusiast or an illustrator you might want to learn more about the illustrators association. Finally, they also sell posters of skyscrapers which you might like to check out.

Google Moon

Sunday, August 9th, 2009


Google Moon gives you an opportunity to explore our moon.  See the locations of the lunar landings and hundreds of pictures from the Apollo Program.  Zoom in using the slider on the left of the screen.  Hold the left mouse button down to move around the surface of the Moon.  As you zoom in on the sites of the Apollo landings you’ll start to see more and more detail.  Across the bottom of the screen you’ll see actual pictures from the Apollo missions.  In the upper right there are buttons to change to experiment with that offer detailed charts, elevation maps, locations of the Apollo missions and satellite images of the moon.
Google Moon was created through the cooperation of Google and the NASA Ames Research Center.  You can learn more about how Google Moon works at: