Ming the Mechanic:
World monitoring

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 World monitoring2007-01-31 18:00
24 comments
picture by Flemming Funch

I love all kinds of website widgets that let you visualize something in the world in real time.

How about emergencies and disasters going on right now on the world map.

You can see the ships moving around in San Francisco Bay.

There are airport traffic monitors.

You can see where there's sunlight on the planet right now.

You can see the cloud cover in your area right now.

And of course you can see who's blogging in the world right now.

Actually there isn't really that much available that you can see in real-time. I wish this was coordinated a little more, so there were just a few key places you could go to visualize most of what's going on right now.

Some people, like the Geosphere Project have worked on ways of unifying global information, although it doesn't look like much, but they're the guys who created the famous cloudfree picture of the Earth.


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24 comments

31 Jan 2007 @ 14:33 by dewf @72.178.51.249 : geographical p2p
i had an idea for a "group browsing" experience... i don't think it'd be all that technically difficult to implement-- just a p2p system where nodes organize themselves more or less according to latitute/longitude, with perhaps a database of locations (coffee shops, airports, etc)... with a browser plugin (or perhaps even by hand) you could "advertise" your internet activity to those who happen to be around you. might be a cool thing for a coffee shop, to be able to see what people are browsing and perhaps initiate IM (or real!) conversations based upon discovered shared interests. kind of like that "ambient presence" stuff from awhile back where you'd transmit audio from one place to another, so that people in disconnected locations feel like they're in each other's presence (hearing keystrokes, office conversation, etc)  


31 Jan 2007 @ 14:53 by Hanae @69.33.46.10 : The Earth Situation Room (ESR):

"The ESR is designed to serve as a worldwide network of installations; an integrated multi-user system which serves as a clearing house, research center, and interface for worldwide research on global change and Earth resource management, and center for tracking and visualizing topical events of global concern." [link]

There is some hope that some form of ESR, or something like it, will eventually grow out of the world wide web in a grass-root fashion through people's interactions and the continuous emergence and marriage of new technologies. It might yet provide a more decentralized and more cohesive image of the "Big Picture," in terms of what is truly important to one, individually or collectively, or as a cohabitant of planet Earth, other than the spoon-fed images presented by the media or the tunnel-vision of narrow-minded nationalist egotism.

Seeing planet Earth from space has been reported by astronauts who have experienced it as a transformational experience. As more and more people get the opportunity to experience Earth from space (it is expected that virtually – if not physically – it is an experience, one day, that everyone will be able to "live" for themselves), new visions will emerge…  



31 Jan 2007 @ 17:28 by ming : Geoscope
That's an excellent aim. In part inspired by Buckminster Fuller's Geoscope vision.

Past posts a bit about that: Incidental Data Analysis, Mirror Worlds, Top problems and solutions.

Oh, and PlaNetwork has a related vision: Earth as a Lens.  



31 Jan 2007 @ 18:02 by ming : Ambient presence
Ah, yes, I love that concept too. I wonder why it hasn't caught on more. With ubiquitous broadband, it is no problem at all to set up a permanent video link between two places in different parts of the world. It would really make sense to see a big screen in a coffee shop or a library that was connected with a similar facility across the globe.  


31 Jan 2007 @ 19:05 by Hanae @69.33.46.10 : Top Problems and Solutions!

An excellent post - possibly one of your best!

Just like vineyards people (or their blogs) yield various vintage years - some are better than others - and Ming-2004 was a good year.

"Off" years may require "chaptalization", (ie: addition of some sugar to bring the wine to optimum alcohol content), or perhaps the addition of crystallized tartaric acid recovered from previous vintage wine-barrels to increase desirable acid content (etc).

These methods are ways of enhancing certain deficient natural elements by the addition of those same elements in isolated form although it should be pointed out that these techniques are being declared illegal in many of the countries associated or aligned with some of the rules governing denominated "quality wine" regions ;-)

Anyway, I must move on. It is always a great pleasure reading you, Ming.

And thank you for being such a gracious host.  



31 Jan 2007 @ 19:48 by b : Great post Ming
Thank you Ming and Hanae for the links and thoughts of all.  


1 Feb 2007 @ 19:20 by energy : Perfect links for the spiritual incline
Great Links there, Ming Master...
Thank-you!
Doug  



7 Feb 2007 @ 09:10 by ming : Flight tracker
Here's a Live Flight Tracker, where one can see which planes are starting and landing in many airports, and see their flight path.  


7 Feb 2007 @ 11:17 by ming : Superbowl jets
And look at this. It is an air traffic control snapshot of all the corporate jets leaving Miami right after the superbowl Monday. Looks like an awful lot of gas to burn just to watch football.
 



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