March 26, 2011
An idea for Google
Google, I think it would be cool if you added a time-traveling feature to Google Maps – a sort of virtual history lesson. You could put a button that says “history” or “time-traveler” or something to that affect. When you click on that button a bar pops up with a scroll bar and if you move it to the right, the boarders that define countries and territories change according to history.
Imagine scrolling back in and seeing the world just after and just before the Louisiana Purchase? Or seeing the layout of the the world before World War I? It would be really cool if you could add layers to it to depict the rise and fall of empires throughout history. Just think of how cool of a tool this would be for history teachers?
Cool Google Trick # 1This trick turns you whole computer screen into a scrolling map (or satellite view) of the Earth!
Step 1: search for something with Google Maps.
Step 2: click the “link” icon in the upper right side of the Google Maps page, then copy and paste that lengthy URL into your browsers address bar.
Step 3: type (or copy and paste) the phrase “&output=embed” at the end of the lengthy URL you pasted from Step 2, then hit the enter key on your keyboard. This fills your your browsers window with the map view (the Google Maps search bar is now gone).
Step 4: Hit the F11 key on your keyboard, or find the “View → Full Screen” function in your browser's menus.
Here is one Example (it has the lengthy URL from Google Maps with the “&output=embed” at the end); just click on the link to see for yourself, then hit the F11 button to make it full screen:
If you're like me then you can sometimes spend hours traversing Google Maps in satellite view, vicariously traveling the country side. I've been doing this for years now, I love searching for things just with the satellite image without labels to see if I can find something from landmarks alone. I like searching out interesting places on the Earth. For a while I was obsessed with those huge irrigation circles you will find out west. Just one of those circles is about as big as my home town. Speaking of my home town, the satellite view of where I grew up wasn't high-quality enough to get close enough to see my home town in great detail but recently the satellite image has greatly improved; so now whenever I'm feeling homesick I can look all over my old stomping grounds and see the streets in the town I used to call home.
Have fun searching the world with your computer screen!
[in the picture below: this was my high school (it has relocated); the blue track is now gone, replaced with a better baseball stadium]