Sunday, July 31, 2005

Way Too Cool!

I've got a couple of blog topics that I've started but haven't finished, and a bunch of pictures to post; but until I get around to doing that, and since I'm too tired to write, I decided to post about two things that I've ran across that I just thought were really cool.

The first is an illustration of why I think that Google Earth is the neatest thing since sliced bread. Without getting technical, I'll just say that it revolves around the feature called "Network Link" (an original and catchy name, isn't it?!): basically, it's an open interface that allows anyone to provide dynamic data to Google Earth (or Google Maps, for that matter). It's the kind of thing that users of GPS software have been doing for awhile, but with GE it's gone mainstream, and it's free.

The picture above is an example of a really cool GE hack that I ran across that illustrates this feature (at Ogle Earth); the author wrote a routine that scrapes NASA's web sites for live coordinates, and serves it in KML format to Google Earth. Basically, you can download a file (at the link above) and it will automatically track the position of the space shuttle Discovery and the ISS, drawing a line to show its altitude. It updates itself every minute. The picture above shows the shuttle somewhere over central Missouri. Click on the picture to see it full size.


This next item is kind of an optical illusion, that demonstrates how color perception can be affected by surrounding colors. Click here to see the effect.

This is kind of hard to believe, but I've personally verified the RGB values and they are the same in each picture. I also captured the images into paintbrush and used the color picker to fill larger squares and compare the colors. Check it out ... it's amazing!


Post a Comment

<< Home