Following up on yesterday’s post on Google Street View in the Grand Canyon, here’s a great article from LightBox. It goes over the incredible impact of Google’s Street View experiement, and what it’s done for mapping and photography. From the article:
In the catalogue to the show Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance, and the Camera since 1870, editor and curator Sandra Phillips compared the biblical story about elders spying on Susannah to present day, saying: “Today, however they would use cell phones to grab a picture of a young woman in a compromised position and send it to friends, having located her garden through Google Earth. Human hunger for seeing the forbidden has not changed. The technologies to facilitate it have.”
And she’s right—this technology has been adapted quickly by artists and devoured by the art world. Doug Rickard used Google Street View to see the back roads of the nation in a series called A New American Picture, which was featured at New York City’s MoMA last year and is currently on view at Yossi Milo Gallery. Geoff Dyer wrote extensively in the Guardian about Rickard, saying: “Any doubts as to the artistic – rather than ethical or conceptual – merits of this new way of working were definitively settled by Rickard’s pictures. It was William Eggleston who coined the phrase “photographing democratically” but Rickard has used Google’s indiscriminate omniscience to radically extend this enterprise – technologically, politically and aesthetically.”
Today, demonstrating the rocky and rugged paths we’ll travel to make Google Maps even more complete, we’re collecting imagery from a place no car, trike or snowmobile has ever been before. On its first official outing, the Street View team is using the Trekker—a wearable backpack with a camera system on top—to traverse the Grand Canyon and capture 360-degree images of one of the most breathtaking natural landscapes on the planet.
By far the coolest example of automated scrolling and parallax in HTML by our friends at Google. Here’s their explanation of the site, but the real magic for me comes in how they implemented the concept in code.
We’re answering those questions with Story of Send, a new site that gives you a behind-the-scenes look into how all that virtual information makes its journey through the real world—from your Internet service provider to our data centers and beyond. Along the way, you’ll discover everything from where we filter for spam and scan for viruses to how we’re minimizing our impact on the environment through energy efficiency and renewable power.
Today it was announced at Google I/O that Google is taking the Chrome Web Store, it’s store for selling applications and modules to run in its Chrome Web Browser, worldwide. Additionally, Google is starting to add in-app purchases, and a flat fee for developers to sell products. This brings the Chrome Web Store even more in line with mainstream “app stores” like Apple’s iTunes Store and the Android Market.
What this means for the industry is that web-apps are continuing to gain momentum towards mainstream use, and will continue to start to cut into the penetration of “installed” apps, in favor of “web-apps”. Google’s example was the newly announced Angry Birds for Chrome.
Chrome’s whole concept and selling point is that all of its applications and functionality happens on the web browser and “in the cloud” – there’s no concept of a user really having installed apps, and everything that’s done is synchronized across devices, and accessible anywhere. Additionally, most of the actual data processing that happens in an “app” is done offsite in the “cloud”.
Loading up Google this morning, I was given a brand new shiny navigation bar. The new bar is much more polished than before, and offers enhanced integration with my Google profile. Apparently they’ve been testing this for quite some time now, and are slowly rolling it out to the masses. According to Google Operating System, there are a few different versions, too.
Co-workers Kenny Chung and Ben Beyda also tweeted about this well before the change hit my own account.
Julia Map uses Google Maps API, and HTML 5 Canvas to render the images. It will let you browse these fractals in an interactive manner. We hope you will enjoy exploring the different Julia sets, and share the URLs of the most artistic images you discovered.
Update 2011-03-11** Ben Beyda just sent over this new fractal rendering engine, Fractal Lab. From Ben: “We could see this project being pushed even further by adding the ability to create animations from these infinite worlds, which could then be exported and integrated into live visuals and other video-based work.”
Fractal Lab is a WebGL based fractal explorer allowing you to explore 2D and 2D fractal. The fractals are rendered using the OpenGL Shading Language (GLSL) to enable real-time interactivity.
Recently, a client asked me about Google Mobile Search Results, and how the algorithm works to prioritize results aimed specifically at mobile users. In general, I believe that Google favors mobile optimized sites in their mobile search results. There are a number of usability features, such as location base services, screen real estate, and touch gestures that greatly enhance the functionality of Mobile sites. Google seems to be optimizing its mobile search results to deliver sites that deliver enhanced mobile functionality to the user.
For your reference, below are a few resources regarding Google’s treatment of mobile optimized sites.
“Mobility is a ranking factor for mobile search, and not optimizing a
mobile site could make it more difficult to appear in competitive
nonbranded searches where mobility is a factor. Likewise, having an
optimized mobile site could make it easier to appear for competitive
nonbranded keywords where mobility is a factor.”
“As mobile search evolves and mobile ranking factors become more
prevalent, brands that don’t optimize a mobile site today will be busy
playing catch up tomorrow, building mobile links and paying attention
to mobile ranking factors to their site. Search engines look at age of
links and age of site when it comes to ranking because such factors
are hard to manipulate. Success in mobile SEO will be difficult if
postponed until absolutely necessary.”