Location OS – The introduction of location awareness to the Apple iPhone OS, and Google Android OS, means that phone applications on these systems can have standardized availibility to location. The iPhone released location awareness in their OS upgrade in June 2008. And Android’s location awareness was built in with the first phone released – the Tmobile G1. Already there are dozens of applications (if not hundreds) which support, or are built around, the location awareness capability. Applications like geotagging your photos, finding nearby friends for a meet up, finding the cheapest nearby gas station, and more are all available on your phone. According to Google’s Geo Team tech guru Ed Stone, Microsoft Windows has announced they will provide location awareness interfaces under the Windows OS. He also hints that Apple may announce such location awareness in the rumored January announcement of a new Apple OS dubbed “Snow Leopard”.
GeoEye – Satellite imagery provider GeoEye got some major public exposure with a big story in Friday’s USA Today. Of course, the paper’s angle had a negative slant telling how having these high resolution satellite images (the same ones we’ve been using in Google Earth for over 3 years) in the hands of the public is “worrying the government”. However, the article goes on to explain many of the positive uses of the imagery and makes it plain that this kind of imagery is here to stay. The good news for GeoEye is that it gets their name in the mainstream media in a mostly positive context. via AnyGeo
Super Tour Mashup – Another mashup called Gaiagi is using the popular Google Earth plugin milk truck driving simulator, but goes way beyond a simple mod. This mashup lets you do 3D driving tours in the GE plugin in various locations and simultaneously shows your position on Google Maps, shows you Street View imagery, and shows you Microsoft Virtual Earth Bird’s Eye imagery all at the same time! I like the way the developer handles the situation if you are using the Mac (or a browser that doesn’t support the GE Plugin) – it shows you a screenshot of what you would be seeing and suggests you load the plugin (if you can). This mashup is a great concept, especially with the increasing availability of imagery for all these sources. The developer has already released some tours in Europe as well as in the US. via GoogleMapsMania
Links: Location OS, GeoEye, Super Tour Mashup
November 10, 2008