You Think That's Close?

My broth­er sent me a link to Microsoft­’s http://local.live.com that does the close-up ari­al from MIT one bet­ter, and it even does it from an angle, so you can see the height of the build­ings. Not only that, but you can actu­al­ly see 1) the satel­lite dish on our roof and 2) our old car. I’m not sure I like this, although at least it’s not live (that car, like us, no longer lives there and the satel­lite dish was lat­er moved to a high­er place on the roof because the trees were grow­ing too high and we were los­ing trans­mis­sion in the sum­mer months). I make it to be about 3 or 4 years old.
Click each of these to see them at full mag­ni­fi­ca­tion:
Even Closer Even Closer2

I have to say that I’m sur­prised that the Depart­ment of Home­land Secu­ri­ty isn’t start­ing to get worked up about these map­ping sys­tems (Maybe they are and we just don’t know about it, a com­mon sit­u­a­tion these days.) Add in GPS locaters (as you can do with the Google sys­tem) and you’ve got some­thing of an Urban Tac­ti­cal Map­ping sys­tem on a shoe­string. There’s an elec­tri­cal sub­sta­tion near the top left of one of the maps, and tak­ing it out would be a lot eas­i­er if you could see all of the side-streets, where the police would be most like­ly to come from, as well as your escape route(s). With the pow­er out all out for the neigh­bor­hood, rob­bing the busi­ness­es in the area would be a lot eas­i­er, bat­tery back­ups aside.

I hate to be look­ing at just the bad (crim­i­nal or ter­ror­ist) side of this. After all, sys­tems like this could also insure that fleets of ambu­lances and taxi­cabs reach their des­ti­na­tions faster and with less fuel spent idling in traf­fic jams and less exhaust spewed into the air. Tech­nol­o­gy is always neu­tral.

One Reply to “You Think That's Close?”

  1. Hi, David! Glad to see you’re doing okay. I agree–nearly every tech­nol­o­gy is neu­tral; it just depends on how peo­ple use it. (I say near­ly every tech­nol­o­gy because I’m still not sure what pos­i­tive uses can be found for napalm and some of the more dead­ly gad­gets cre­at­ed dur­ing WWII.)

    Hope you’re weath­er­ing your first BC win­ter well. We’ve had our first big snow­fall here and now just have ice on the ground every­where. On the oth­er hand, it’s sun­ny, so what the heck?

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