Approximately two years ago, James Kim died after he and his family were stranded, snowbound, in their car on the Oregon coast (Previously, previously, and (selflink) previously). But what if he'd had a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB)? [more inside]
Baghdad nights: evaluating the US military ‘surge’ using nighttime light signatures (PDF). A team of UCLA geographers using satellite imagery to track the amount of light emitted in Baghdad at night found that electricity use in Sunni neighborhoods fell prior to the surge and never returned, indicating that ethnic cleansing by Shiite militias drove the Sunnis away before the surge began and was largely responsible for the subsequent decrease in violence. [Via Passport]
The Weather World 2010 project at UIUC began as a comprehensive meteorology tutorial designed for a high school/undergraduate level. It has since expanded to include guides to remote sensing and reading weather maps. (Some highlights include optical effects, severe storms, and the basics of weather forecasting.) For folks in the US, it also has current surface and satellite imagery for a number of different atmospheric properties.
30 Incredible Abstract Satellite Images of Earth "From 400 miles away, the earth transforms into abstract art. The global landscape is impressionist, cubist and pointillist." Nice NASA images from 2000, downloadable as wallpaper.
Satellites Document War, Destruction From Outer Space. The AAAS's Geospatial Technologies and Human Rights Project uses high-resolution satellite photography to detect and call attention to human rights violations.
Christopher Tarnovsky, smartcard programmer, gives a fascinating insider account of his years in the cloak-and-dagger world of satellite TV piracy. Tarnovsky began as a satellite pirate himself before being hired by a DirecTV contractor to develop anti-piracy electronic countermeasures; he was allegedly responsible for the "Black Sunday" attack on DirecTV pirates. [more inside]
NPR article on World Where's Waldo Link to the website A Canadian woman made a giant waldo and put it on top of her house and is waiting for the google earth satellites to pick him up.
Arthur C. Clarke, author of 2001, inventor of the telecommunications satellite and the only reason most geeks can find Sri Lanka on a map, has died shortly after celebrating his 90th birthday.
Discoveries made using satellite imagery, particularly via Google Earth, have made headlines in the blue and green before. Increasingly high-resolution photos, combined with obsessive interest, have lead inevitably to the next step: interpretation and analysis of spots on the Earth's surface for which information is restricted, censored, or classified, such as the preparedness of military defenses in North Korea and Iran, or the viability of Saudi Arabia's next big oil play. Of course, not all mapping is benevolent.
A video has been posted showing the shooting down of satellite USA193 high over the Pacific! [more inside]
HobbySpace hosts an exhaustive collection of information and links about space-related hobbies, including amateur astronomy, satellite design, and rocketry for both beginners and experts.
Landsat Image Mosaic Of Antarctica UK and US researchers peice together the most detailed map of Antarctica yet, searching through years of data to find cloud free images.
Video (8MB, MPEG) of arctic sea ice extent, recorded from January to September 2007. [other formats] This summer a dramatic decrease compared to previous years in the extent of the north pole ice cap was observed. Scientists are freaked out [bugmenot]. This summer, the Northwest Passage was open for a few weeks, allowing three ships to traverse it. [more inside]
Fifty years ago this week the heavens beeped (also, the beeps as recorded in Germany, Czechoslovakia, and Washington - though the accompanying light in the sky wasn't Sputnik after all). The launch of Sputnik started the Space Age causing a stir in the United States, and leading to the birth of NASA. The history and ongoing echoes of the Sputnik launch are wonderfully covered in a recent New York Times retrospective with interesting accompanying videos.
High resolution images of Earth. The German satellite TerraSAR-X was shot into space on June 15, and already four days after sent some beautiful pictures back to Earth. Pictures are described in German, but you'll figure it out.
Fighter jets, overturned tractor trailers, WW II bombers, cars parked on walls, and more of The Strangest Sights in Google Earth
Real time satellite tracking - another interesting use of Google Maps, Ajax, and orbital telemetry.
Satellite images reveal shrimp trawlers' turbulent trails. Vessels turn firm sea bottoms into ooze, destroying habitats. [Via Gristmill.]
Live, From Outer Space: rural fires [1, 2], The Haze in China [1 ,2, 3] and its movement, aerosols, and the brothers carbon monoxide [a photochemical smog agent] and carbon dioxide.
Have you ever wondered what a solar eclipse would look like from space? The STEREO (Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory) has just sent back its view (awe-inspiring video included). It has also sent back some gorgeous pictures of our sun (and the McNaught Comet). For more media, check out the other galleries (including some 3D images). For more about the project, see NASA's STEREO homepage. Be sure to also stop by the Johns Hopkins University STEREO Page, where you can download a mission guide (pdf), view animations, watch a video of the launch, or even make your own papercraft STEREO model (pdf). You can also learn more in six minute segments with their series of short educational videos.
"Not knowing may kill us." Seed Magazine asks why the DSCOVR climate satelite (constructed for a paltry $100 million) is just sitting in a storage warehouse collecting dust when several nations outside the US are offering to launch the thing on their own dime.
Spin, exposed live and wriggling. In 1995, Brian Springer released an hour-long documentary film comprised of incredibly revealing moments caught from raw satellite feeds. Not only do we get to hear the spin-doctor coaching candidates received during various commercial breaks, there are also some amazing moments such as Larry King suggesting to Clinton that Ted Turner could "serve him," an anchor suggesting to her expert that during the L.A. riots his frank diagnosis of inner-city hope is "too obtuse," and the exclusion and exclusion of Larry Agran from the 1992 Democratic primaries — and, really, there's much more.
TRACE - The Transition Region and Coronal Explorer, a solar telescope satellite. Launched in 1998, it has since taken millions of pictures of the sun and its many spots, prominences, and filaments. There are thousands of amazing images for you to browse, some with extensive explanations. There are movies as well, strange and beautiful. And don't be ignant, get your sun facts straight!
New Zealand's monopoly Pay TV service went dark for about 14 hours last night. The Sky TV outage was apparently due to an error positioning a satellite, but not helped by the fact that said satellite is running on a backup processor and is years out of its regular service life. One enterprising viewer is taking things into his own hands.
Oprahhhhh Froooooom Sppaaaaaaaaacccceee... and other interesting landmarks via The World According to Google.
Windows Live Local Orgasmically merges street level imagery with satellite to create virtual streetwalks (For Seattle or San Francisco anyway)
I Spy Black Satellites Amateur satellite spotters can track everything government spymasters blast into orbit. Except the stealth bird codenamed Misty
accurate weather forecasts...yes... Add your own sound effects.
I noticed tonight that my Dish TV basic-subscription service no longer offers MSNBC and suddenly does offer FOX News. Strange indeed, but the bigger issue methinks is a potential plus in that a la carte programming may be on its way soon. Great, you say, right? Perhaps not -- because if you only pay for what you get, that means that the little guys (like Link TV, the RFD network and Free Speech TV) likely face a big honkin' challenge in being visible and thus viable. So. Given that...do we really want pay-per-channel programming? Or is this just a moot point considering that "convergence" is creeping ever so closer?>
Hi-res satellite photos of Earth Four pages worth, desktop wallpaper sized.
Google Earth Threatens Democracy - Again! Sequel to an earlier article at The Register, here are some Google Earth shots of things which some would rather keep non-public, such as the recently uncensored White House roof or Russian nuke silos(page 1), or which stealth aircraft are parked at which air bases(page 3). Find more and send them in for their next dispatch.
Google Earth threatens democracy The planet's military bases apparently cannot hide from Google's all seeing eye.
Lucy and Ethiopia From a favorite mailing list, I receive my dose of satellite images. One of the images this week is from Ethiopia. Reading the text they provide, you’ll see this is the area where ‘Australopithecus afarensis’ hails from; she is know as Lucy to most of us. Why Lucy? Because Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds was playing on the radio when they found her. The site also lead me to this guy, who has the title Paleo-Artist and has rather interesting artwork on his site.
Next generation page for weather sat info Tutorial is attached to the "New User" button. This is nice. "Purpose" is some Flash thing I can't read but the weather satellite maps (USA, for now) are very nicely done. You can see the lights coming on as the sunset line sweeps across the country. Except, of course, where they're off ...
Time-lapse videos of hurricanes from space from Nasa's Marshall Space Flight Center's Camex-4 Hurricane study. [note: Quicktime]
Satellite photos of airplanes in flight. This is a great time-waster, but for some reason I keep looking for more (you may need to adjust the zoom bar on the page to maximum). These are all at the Atlanta airport, and I was surprised how close they were to each other.... check out the one that left before, and the one before that, and the one before that... Those are all taking off, here's one that's landing. Can anybody find any more? Or does anyone care?
Microsoft wipes Apple from the face of the Earth. Virtual Earth, that is. A search for "1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, CA" renders only an empty field and some sort of barn. This is what it really looks like. Finding that other microcomputer company is obviously not a problem. Microsoft blames old photographs (from 1991) for the omission, but copyright notices on the images go only as far back as last year.
“Negative eco-tourism from orbit.” Sprol shows the visual macroscopic effects of the decisions and behavior of our society. Since previous generations have not had the advantage of this perspective, it is our obligation to use it wisely.
Google Maps now does satellite images which is pretty cool (zoom all the way in), and what everyone predicted they would do with the Keyhole software company they bought. The part that freaks me out is finding my own house with my own car in the driveway, taken last fall (by the looks of construction in the neighborhood). I guess it's time for all of us to have our Streisand moment and wonder when satellite imagery has gotten too good. [via]
Before, during and after. DigitalGlobe's QuickBird satellite imaged the coast of Sri Lanka at precisely the time the tidal wave hit the beaches. It was pure coincidence.
Bridges TV was launched today and plans to "celebrate the American Muslim lifestyle and culture". Unlike satelite channels Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya, Bridges TV plans to focus on English-speaking American Muslim youth rather than their parents. So what kind of cheesy programming can you look forward to? "One show features a Muslim newspaper reporter named Jinnah who solves whodunits. A soap opera explores the melodrama of a Muslim father confronted with his daughter's desire to marry a non-Muslim." It should be noted that Al Jazeera plans to launch an English-language channel in 2005.