Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Is historical imagery coming to Street View?

Is historical imagery coming to Street View?:

I really like the historical imagery feature in Google Earth. It's a very useful feature that allows you to look at some neat things, and it's a great way to visit the past in various areas around the world.



As reveled in a thread in the Google Earth Hacks message board by 'Munden', there are some signs that perhaps a "historical imagery" view is coming to Google Street View in the future.



He's found a number of areas that have multiple Street View imagery versions available online, and he cites a handful of examples such as this building that looks like a giant sheep. Here is the old image, here is the new image, and here is what they look like side-by-side:



sheep-house.jpg


In his testing, Munden has discovered some interesting things:



In New Zealand, old imagery isn't the default but isn't removed anymore. My old links will call up the old low resolution images, even on browsers that have never seen that URL before. I've even cleared the caches. Google definitely has the old images in their Street View database. You can switch by dragging the Pegman by a pixel or two and suddenly you'll be in the new imagery and stay there no matter how much moving around you do.

It's important to note that once you are viewing an older image if you use the SV in-picture arrows to move through the pictures, you will stay in that older imagery. You have to drag the Pegman to switch to new imagery, as I mentioned previously. This could simply be an artifact of the old URL, and they have no plans to create a history of Street View of course. I find it most interesting that you STAY in the old imagery once you're viewing it though.


Other examples include a futuro home (old image, new image), or the "Christmas decorations" location that 'sladys' found -- the new imagery is embedded on the site, but the old imagery can still be found via this URL.



Ultimately, all of this might not mean anything. Google hasn't made any announcements about anything related to historical Street View imagery and they may have other reasons for keeping the old imagery accessible. In any case, it's a neat little feature that Munden has uncovered and may be a sign of things to come. Good find, Munden!



Leap year meditation

Leap year meditation:

Once in four years, just once, perhaps we could:


Forgive, forget, relax, care, stand out, speak up, contribute, embrace, create, make a ruckus, give credit, skip, smile, speak truth and refuse to compromise--more than we usually do. Pick just one or two and start there.


Hey, it's just one day.


Careful, though, it might become a habit.



#SRFRDR TED: Daniel Pauly: The ocean's shifting baseline - Daniel Pauly (2010)

TED: Daniel Pauly: The ocean's shifting baseline - Daniel Pauly (2010): The ocean has degraded within our lifetimes, as shown in the decreasing average size of fish. And yet, as Daniel Pauly shows us onstage at Mission Blue, each time the baseline drops, we call it the new "normal." At what point do we stop readjusting downward?

Who cares about Leap Day? Geocachers. - The Tennessean

Who cares about Leap Day? Geocachers. - The Tennessean:

Who cares about Leap Day? Geocachers.
The Tennessean
The University School of Nashville is hosting a two-day introductory geocaching class Thursday and Saturday. Registration is $45 and details can be found at www.USNeveningclasses.org or by calling 615-321-8019. Chris Dickens literally climbs mountains ...

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Safety Report Reveals More @SCE_SONGS Violations #NukeFreeCal

Safety Report Reveals More San Onofre Violations: Two of the violations were identified and reported by the plant's operator, Southern California Edison, three more were self-revealing during inspections. None of the problems were considered significant with regard to overall plant safety, ...
See all stories on this topic »

PRESS BRIEFING: #Fukushima Citizens Speak Out March 3, 2012

PRESS BRIEFING: Fukushima Citizens Speak Out March 3, 2012:

PRESS BRIEFING: Fukushima Citizens Speak Out

March 3, 2012


A fully bilingual press briefing will be held on March 3, 2012 in Fukushima City, co-sponsored by Green Action, Peace Boat and FoE Japan.


The briefing will be an opportunity to hear directly from Fukushima citizens’ groups in the leadup to the first anniversary of the disaster on March 11 about their activities to monitor and protect children and citizens from radiation. These include actions to measure and make public data on external and internal exposure to radiation, to provide public consultation and medical advice, food measurements, to provide support for voluntary evacuees and to decontaminate the radiation-affected areas.


Date: Saturday, March 3, 2012

Time: Opens 15:00, Briefing 15:30 – 16:30, Individual interviews 16:30 – 18:00

Venue: Chamber Omachi (チェンバ大町) , Omachi 4-15, Fukushima City

http://www.fmcnet.co.jp/cbomachi/

Tel: 024-522-4841

10 mins walk from Fukushima Station


Speakers



  • SATO Sachiko – Fukushima Network for Saving Children from Radiation Board Member, organic farmer and mother of two. Coordinating the “Yasai Cafe” (vegetable cafe) project to provide safe vegetables for children in Fukushima.

  •  ABE Nobuyuki – Citizens’ Radioactivity Measuring Station Board Member, Communications Coordinator.

  • TAKAHASHI Seiko – Fukushima Network for Saving Children from Radiation Secretary, mother of a teenage child. Runs a ‘cafe’ for consultation for mothers in Fukushima.

  •  Others TBC

  • Moderator: Aileen Mioko Smith (Executive Director, Green Action)


Contact:

Aileen Mioko Smith (Green Action), Email: amsmith@gol.com

Meri Joyce (Peace Boat), Email: meri@peaceboat.gr.jp


Co-sponsored by: Green Action, Peace Boat, FoE Japan


Download “PRESS BRIEFING: Fukushima Citizens Speak Out March 3, 2012” (PDF)




Dynamic Views: Update #3 - Gadgets!

Dynamic Views: Update #3 - Gadgets!:



Hi Bloggers.

Have you been contemplating a new design for your blog? Are you ready to spruce up your pages with a fresh, modern, and new look? Then you may want to check out Dynamic Views - which now include gadget support.

Dynamic Views are a set of templates that make it easy and fun to explore a blog. As you might expect, we’ve made the gadgets interactive too. Instead of appearing in a panel that consumes valuable real estate on your blog, gadgets now appear in a dock that slides in and out as you move your cursor over them.




Gadgets supported in Dynamic Views include: Blog Archive, Followers, Labels, Profile, Subscribe (a new gadget - automatically present if either Follow By Email or Subscription installed), and Link List. These gadgets make it easier for your readers to navigate your blog (archive, labels), and to follow it (followers and RSS).


If you are currently using a traditional template and change to Dynamic Views, supported gadgets will automatically appear on your blog. Gadgets can be added, removed, and customized from the Layouts tab the same as with any other template.

If you’re one of the millions of blogs who have adopted Dynamic Views since we launched them in September 2011, we encourage you to head on over to our Google+ page and tell us what you like about them!

Happy blogging.

Bruce Polderman, Product Manager


JIMMY FORREST "Night Train" (United Label)

JIMMY FORREST "Night Train" (United Label): Jimmy Forrest had a tremendous hit in 1951 with "Night Train," a simple blues riff he lifted from Duke Ellington's "Happy Go Lucky Local." Although the tenorman was not able to duplicate that song's appeal with any other recording, he was a popular performer in the R&B circuit throughout the 1950s. Virtually all of his records from the era (originally made for the United label) are on this CD reissue, including five selections not previously released. The tough-toned Forrest was not really a screamer or a honker, and the 17 numbers on the set should be of interest both to early R&B and jazz collectors. Recorded in Chicago, Forrest fronts a rhythm section that includes either Charles Fox or Bunky Parker on piano and sometimes trumpeter Chauncey Locke or trombonist Bert Dabney. The music is very enjoyable and highly recommended. (Scott Yanow, Allmusic)

trax:
01 Night Train 02 Calling Dr. Jazz 03 Sophisticated Lady 04 Swingin' And Rockin' 05 Bolo Blues 06 Mister Goodbeat 07 Flight 3-D 08 Hey Mrs. Jones 09 My Buddy 10 Song Of The Wanderer 11 Blue Groove 12 Big Dip 13 Begin The Beguine 14 There Will Never Be Another You 15 Coach 13 16 Dig Those Feet 17 Mrs. Jones' Daughter
...served by Gyro1966...

Monday, February 27, 2012

The Google Earth Diorama

The Google Earth Diorama:

Over the years we've shown you a lot of cool stuff from Paul van Dinther, including great games such as "Drive the A-Team Van" and "Ships". He's back with a huge new project that he's been working on for months, and we're thrilled to be able to show it to you: Diorama.



He calls it "Diorama" because there are many websites that have made attempts to utilise Google Earth to show map related information but invariably they all use static views and boring place markers to tell their story.



There is a lack of story telling tools for Google Earth and he decided that this can be done much better. Developing a fully customised Google Earth presentation is expensive but he had learned enough about the requirements to design a generic presentation engine that will meet most needs. Diorama runs on top of Google Earth and can be embedded into users web-pages. With Diorama, website owners can easily build very rich presentations using the simple sequence based Diorama API and the browser based code-builder toolkit.



diorama.jpg


Diorama can do so much more than other tools because it is not limited to the capabilities of KML. Diorama makes heavy use of the Google Earth API thus getting around the many timing limitations that are associated with KML tour data. He plans to grow the functionality of Diorama with the addition of a browser based editor, model animation and many more exciting new features.



If you're not able to visit his Diorama page to view it right now, here's a quick video that shows how it works:





Pedro Gipuzkoa, who has built some amazing 3D buildings in Spain, is using Diorama to show off his work in a Google Earth modelling contest. You can view his Diorama here.



Paul's new project is very powerful, and could be quite useful in a variety of applications. His command of the Google Earth Plug-in is nearly unrivaled, and now he's given the rest of us an easy way to create awesome interactive experiences for our own website visitors. Learn more about how it works and how to get started at planetinaction.com/diorama or watch a short tutorial video here:





Saturday, February 25, 2012

California is America’s Most-Hated State

California is America’s Most-Hated State:

ArnoldDennis Romero writes in LA Weekly:


​Don’t hate us because we’re beautiful. Or do.


It turns out the left-most state is also America’s most-hated, according to a recent survey by Public Policy Polling. And California’s left-leaning politics seem to have a lot to do with it. The Golden State is the most-disliked in the union, and Hawaii is the most-liked. In fact, ours was one of only five states that received majority-negative views by our fellow Americans, according to PPP:


Americans generally have a favorable view of most states. Only five are in negative territory, led by California (27% favorable and 44% unfavorable), Illinois (19-29), New Jersey (25-32), Mississippi (22-28), and Utah (24-27).


Barack Obama’s home state of Hawaii was the most-loved, with 54 percent of us viewing it positively. (Of course — it’s America’s vacation state) …


More: LA Weekly

TEDxLive screenings near you: How to watch one day of TED2012

TEDxLive screenings near you: How to watch one day of TED2012:


On Monday, TED2012 kicks off in Long Beach, and TEDActive in Palm Springs.


If you’d like to watch one day of TED — in company of great people from your community — check out TEDxLive! Around the world, local TEDx organizers will be sharing a livestream of Wednesday’s TED sessions in theaters, homes, cafes and schools. Find a local TEDxLive event near you >>


And of course, if you’d like to watch the entire livecast of all four days of TED — as well as TEDGlobal, our annual European conference this summer — there’s still time to sign up for a TED Live membership. Get details >>



"THE BEST DOO-WOPS OF BANDERA"

"THE BEST DOO-WOPS OF BANDERA": There is a lot of Soul, Blues, R&B, and vocal group music from this Chicago label here. It really isn't a doo-wop collection, however.trax:
1. listen - The Impressions 2. oh baby come dance with me - The Dialtones 3. summer's coming in - The Epics 4. please tell me - The Fleetones 5. cut you loose - The Boomerangs 6. from out of this world - The Majestics 7. save your love - James Mack 8. i found me a lover - The Lovelites 9. ruby had gone - The Dialtones 10. twist it baby - Jimmy Lee Robinson 11. your lover man - The Fleetones 12. one love have i - Bobby Davis 13. telling lies - The Boomerangs 14. you better stop it - The Lovelites 15. rowdy mae - The Epics 16. you didn't learn that in school - The Majestics 17. she's a problem - Bobby Davis 18. times is hard - Jimmy Lee Robinson 19. stolen honey - James Mack 20. shorty's got to go - The Impressions
...served by Gyro1966...

Friday, February 24, 2012

#icc12 This is My Hobby – Creative Geocaching

This is My Hobby – Creative Geocaching:

Have you seen a geocache this creative?


 












Check out the latest Geocaching.com video above. Share it with your friends to show how geocaching is more than finding plastic containers in the woods, it’s unlocking adventure — and it’s exercise and learning and exploration and, and, and… (your answer in comments)


[This video was shot with express permission from cache owner. The cache name is "The Outlet Mall." It's GC1RKTP, located in Washington State, USA]


Thursday, February 23, 2012

Meet the Preppers: An Insider’s Look at the New Animal Planet Show (Including Full Pilot Video)

Meet the Preppers: An Insider’s Look at the New Animal Planet Show (Including Full Pilot Video):

The following article has been contributed by Phil Burns, co-founder of the American Preppers Network.


(You can view the full pilot episode of Meet the Preppers below this article)




It has been an interesting 48 hours for all of us who were in Meet the Preppers, namely my family, watching the responses has been educational and enlightening – and frustrating and unsettling.


Phil Burns Intro


But let’s start with an introduction – I’m Phil Burns, the father of 8 on Meet the Preppers.  I’m a co-owner of The American Preppers Network and one of the original founders of Utah Preppers in 2008, which was started before the APN.  I’ve been involved with the American Preppers Network since it was founded, I have a weekly podcast on Prepping,  and have around 80 youtube videos on Prepping and related topics.  I’ve also had several articles published, most recently in Survivalist magazine.


And I’ve seen people stating that I know nothing about Prepping and that I’m a fake.  I’ll let you decide, you can read all the specific details about me here.  Meanwhile, I’d like to give you a bit of history about how the show came to be.


Meet the Preppers Background


I was contacted by a production company who represented Animal Planet over a year ago.  They had been commissioned by Animal Planet to put together a show on Emergency Preparedness because Animal Planet is working on adjusting their brand to feature humans as animals – hence their new slogan “Surprisingly Human”.   They had some crazy ideas about how to portray Preppers and I began educating them.


After we had put together a couple treatments with some reasonable ideas, we selected one and filmed our first demo.  It was about this time that I began receiving calls from Doomsday Preppers on National Geographic asking me if I was interested in being in their pilot.  I really didn’t like the Doomsday Preppers production company’s ideas and tried to help guide them to a better format.  What they have now is much better than what they originally had in mind, but I’m still not a fan of it.


Animal Planet watched our first demo and asked us to make some changes, they did the same thing after we showed them the second demo.  They liked the third demo much better and asked for some adjustments for the pilot.  What aired as “Meet the Preppers” on Saturday took over a year to put together and required a lot of hard work and back and forth.


Phil’s Objective with “Meet the Preppers”


As I helped with the creative work and moved forward with this project, I had one goal in mind for the show: to bring Prepping into mainstream homes and help open their minds to the possibilities of getting prepared.


This show is not about teaching you more about survival if you’re a survivalist.  It’s not even about teaching you about hardcore Prepping if you’re a Prepper (although I do believe you’ll get some things out of each episode). The show is geared towards the non-Prepper and non-Survivalist with the intent of showing them some things that mainstream people are at risk for every single day – and show them some new ideas and possibilities that could serve them in those areas – and hopefully lead them towards more of a Prepper mindset.


(please note, this is Phil’s objective – NOT Animal Planet’s, but this is where I’ve been exerting whatever influence I have on the creative process)


Overview of “My Pink Pistol”


The pilot that aired is called “Meet the Preppers: My Pink Pistol” and we cover a lot of topics.  The primary theme in this episode was to introduce Gibson, my 10 year old daughter and show “prepping” from her perspective.  NONE of her lines were scripted or fed to her, everything she said was said in interviews on her own, my wife and I were not in the house during the kids taping.  Gibson approaches us in the beginning of the show and makes a potential deal with us about a cell phone versus a gun – specifically a pink .22.


For the first half of the show, we’re introducing the family, introducing some of the ideas behind Prepping and setting up some of the activities for the rest of the episode.  I suggest to my wife that due to some recent kidnappings in our area that it might be useful to freshen up the kids anti-kidnapping skills and put them through a drill.  She disagrees with me and we move on to some other things at the house.  Later we take the kids to the water park and run a situational awareness drill on them – they fail, disguised (poorly) as a stranger, I’m able to separate the kids from their mom.  This helps convince my wife that putting the kids through a kidnapping field exercise isn’t such a bad idea.  So we do.


Feedback about Meet the Preppers and Phil’s Viewpoint


So I’ve seen LOTS of different responses all over the internet, some of them have been good feedback and have given me ideas to help improve the show.  Others have been snarky, arrogant and very close-minded while others have just been libs complaining about guns.


“Phil puts his kids through a traumatic kidnapping experience which is stupid”


Seriously, you think it was traumatic?  Let’s just get that part out of the way.  By the time we filmed that part, the kids had been on set for 3 weeks filming every day.  During that time we filmed multiple drills, events, hikes, outings, cooking, family meetings, you name it.  They only used less than 1/10th of what we filmed in this episode.


So, look at the kidnapping scene.  If YOU see the girls on camera, at the least there is a cameraman, likely a sound person, at night a lighting person, probably a producer at a bare minimum.  In this case, there were 3 cameramen, 2 sound guys, a producer and a production assistant with the girls.  They are suddenly grabbed from behind and someone starts running – they thought is was a GAME.  They thought one of their uncles, me, or someone in production was playing with them.  When they were grabbed “this is a drill” was whispered into their ear.  They know how training works, they know how field exercises work and they went for it.  Especially Gibson.  She knows that field exercises are an opportunity to practice what you’ve been taught.


So, how traumatic do you think it really was?  Did you not see their interview about it?  They LOVED it!


“Why the focus on handcuffs?  Why not duct tape or zip ties?”


First of all, the producers felt handcuffs represented the more difficult scenario – which they do.  Getting out of duct tape, zip ties and wire is easy if you know how to do it, a lot easier than handcuffs.  Another comment was “what kidnapper uses handcuffs” – well, they’re actually a lot more efficient and easier than trying to tape or zip someones hands together – A LOT easier.


The most commonly used restraint in kidnapping is phone cord.  It’s easy to get out of if you know what you’re doing – which all of my kids do.  It’s also pretty boring on camera.


Refer to my bio that I linked to in the first paragraph, I teach Urban Escape and Evasion along with Kelly Alwood – my buddy that kidnaps them.  We teach executives, Military, LEO and regulars civilians how to escape illegal custody.  I actually know what I’m talking about when it comes to kidnapping – these commentors don’t have the first clue beyond what they’re imagining.


“Phil’s a fanatic, kidnapping is a stupid thing to prep for, what moron would try to help his kids not get kidnapped”


Ok, look people - Phoenix, AZ is the NUMBER 2 KIDNAP CAPITAL OF THE WORLD.   I live within 12 hours of that capital.  Since we filmed that episode, there have been 3 kidnappings/attempts in my area – 2 of them within a mile of my house.  The 2 kidnappings I’m discussing with my wife in the show were 2 real kidnappings that happened in my area in the previous month to filming.


The only reason ANYONE would think that kidnapping is not a risk is because they keep themselves blissfully ignorant of the facts.  Your child is at risk.  If your child was taken – it would be THE END OF YOUR WORLD AS YOU KNOW IT.  It would shatter on you.  I’m simply suggesting you do something to mitigate the risk – that you PREPARE.


“Phil show his guns on a wall – that’s stupid.  What idiot would show where he keeps his guns.  What moron would keep his guns on the wall in a garage?”


You are all 100% correct.  I would not show you where I keep my guns.  I did show you a location with a lot of guns that was a stupid one.  The producers wanted to show a ‘gun wall’.


You figure it out.  If you think you know where  I keep my guns you’re wrong.


“I didn’t learn anything new about Prepping”


Yes you did.  You just either aren’t willing to acknowledge it or you didn’t pay attention.  At the very least, you learned a little bit about kidnapping and that you don’t know much about it.


If you feel like you’re such an advanced Prepper that it offered you nothing – then it really wasn’t made for you.  Remember, the goal with the show is to get people thinking about preparedness – not about doomsday.


“This idiot is letting little kids handle guns”


And the idiot that said that keeps his kids ignorant and in fear of guns.


My guns are kept SAFELY.  I’m a certified firearm instructor, range master and have years of experience with them.  There were 2 other certified range masters on the set every time  there was a gun out.  My kids have been shooting since they were all little and safety is DRILLED into their brains.  If my kid and your kid walked into a room where a gun was sitting around – your kid is the one that would end up accidentally shooting themselves or someone else – not mine.


“This guy is showing the world his Preps and his “OpSec” is shot”


I can’t stand this ignorant statement.  Please look at the masthead (big graphic) at the top of this site!   It says: “Freedom Through Teaching Others Self-Reliance”.  That’s not just a pretty sentence – it is my creed in life.  My mission in life is to teach others Preparedness.  I’ve been doing it for years.  I refer you again to my bio linked at the top, I teach and show preps publicly everyday of the week.  I emphatically deny the theory that a Prepper should “hide”.  That’s a chicken-sh*t attitude that helps nobody.  If you have a light, God tells us to hold that light on the hilltop and share it with others.  If you have talents, God tells us to invest those talents heavily, not hide them under a rock.


Two final thoughts; 1)If you think I showed you “all my preps” on tv, think again.  2)If you didn’t catch on, we just demonstrated on the show that if you try to come after us, the entire family will be shooting at you – and there’s quite a few of us.


Take your chicken opsec and go read somewhere else – that is NOT what we teach here.


Next Steps


Several people have asked what’s next.  Depending on how the pilot tested, we may be signed right away.  We have 5 more episodes written and ready to film.  If Animal Planet decides it is not for them – we have 3 other networks that are interested in picking it up.  Soon, there will be another episode – it will likely discuss home fire safety (with a drill!) and will help teach families how to prepare their homes for a fire.


To all those many, many people who have told me they loved the show – THANK YOU!  It is absolutely nerve wracking to put your heart and soul into something and make it the best you possibly can and then throw it out there for the world to see!    It has been a fun process and a great learning experience.  I hope to be able to do a lot more!


View Full Episode: Animal Planet’s Meet the Preppers (Episode 1)





Problems viewing?


Update:  Meet the Preppers review by East Tennessee Prepper



Update: Phil Burns interviewed by Doctor Bones about Meet the Preppers



The Powers of Ten

The Powers of Ten:

Back in 1968, Charles and Ray Eames created an amazing short film titled "Powers of Ten" to illustrate the size of our universe from the very largest to the very smallest scales. If you've never seen the film below, you can watch it here:





The reason this comes up is because of an amazing interactive tool from Cary Huang that simulates that experience called The Scale of the Universe 2. If you haven't checked it out yet, we strongly encourage you to pull up their site and play with it.



scale.jpg


Another great way to experience the Powers of Ten, as Frank mentioned in his previous post back in 2008, is with the excellent KMZ file that Richard Treves posted on his Google Earth Design blog. It's only a subset of the area shown in the movie, since Google Earth can't zoom in or out nearly that far, but it's a neat way to see it for yourself!



powers-ge.jpg


Not only can you experience part of the "Powers of Ten" in Google Earth, but the film was part of the inspiration for the original Keyhole project that later became Google Earth!






Nuclear Roulette #NukeFreeCal

Nuclear Roulette: Both of those are in California, Diablo Canyon in San Luis Obispo and our own SONGS in San Clemente. California earthquake faults light up the entire state. We don't need an unimaginable Fukushima 9.0 earthquake to bring disaster to 8.4 million people ...
See all stories on this topic »

iPhones Cost Less Than $30 To Make?

iPhones Cost Less Than $30 To Make?:

Eric Mack writes on cNet News:


Recent Foxconn revelations hint at higher costs than previous estimates that are still staggeringly low by Western standards. An unprecedented peek behind the curtain of Foxconn’s factories in China may have revealed new hints to how much it actually costs to make each iPhone.


ABC’s “Nightline” was recently given access to the factory floor, and the resulting reporting has provided some new insights into exactly how iPhones are built, a part of the gadget’s gestation process that’s typically been a very closely guarded trade secret.


Horace Dediu, blogger, analyst, and former business development manager for Nokia, tried to parse some of the clues and came to some interesting conclusions …


Read More: cNet News