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« DVD Journal: "Human Nature" | Main | Chicago--Not My Kind of Movie »

February 03, 2003

Free Views -- Overheads

Friedrich --

Sometimes when I "discover" something on the Web, I feel like I must in fact be the last person in the world to run across it. So perhaps you've seen this site here already. If not, you might enjoy a visit. Type in an address, and in a few seconds you'll be given an overhead photograph of that neighborhood. Zoom in, and you'll be able see the actual building you're looking for. I tried the apartment monstrosity I live in now, the suburban house I grew up in, and the in-law's beach bungalow, and they all showed up promptly. Cool!

A bit freaky, too. If computers and lenses get much more powerful, we're going to be able to sit at the computer and dial up images of ourselves sitting at the computer dialing up images of ...



posted by Michael at February 3, 2003


I hadn't seen that one before but I was able to find my house and several other locations I'm familiar with on TerraServer. It's sort of a creepy feeling, knowing your house is visible from space.

Posted by: Lynn on February 3, 2003 1:18 PM

Well, I'm definitely going to have to show the kids this site. How do these guys make money? I mean, the size of the files you'd need to have this much resolution on the whole country is staggering, and presumably costly.

Posted by: Friedrich von Blowhard on February 3, 2003 1:47 PM

They're almost all old USGS satellite photos -- my ranch picture is almost 10 years old. I (and you) can order them from the local USDA office for about $10. Used to be able to do it online, pre-9/11. It looks like GlobalWhatever has had that ban lifted.

When you consider that your tax dollars paid for it already, you should be able to get one for free.

Posted by: Scott Chaffin on February 3, 2003 10:36 PM

Damn, I already sent in my $29.95 for an 8x10 of the house I grew up in. Ripped-off again.

But, hey, maybe I can deduct the cost on my taxes, or maybe pass the bill along to USGS.

And how do people get a piece of this already-paid-for-by-the-taxpayers action?

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on February 4, 2003 12:59 AM

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