Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Google Ocean Launches

Google Ocean launched yesterday, to much fanfare. While not as detailed as Google Earth, the new oceans feature is an important development, particularly for ocean conservationists. Google Ocean offers the opportunity not only to communicate information about the oceans to casual Google Earth users who might not otherwise seek out the information, but also to provide a version of their message that is more interactive, modern and perhaps even more memorable. There's also a feature that allows users to go back in time for some areas and see older satellite photos, providing powerful visual evidence of change over time. While you can't quite find your house like you can on Google Earth, you can click on placemarks provided by groups like National Geographic and pull up video, pictures, and other information about various ocean locations. In some areas you can even see basic outlines of the seafloor. Highly recommended. As with Google Earth, I wouldn't be surprised if, over time, people found new and innovative conservation-oriented applications for Google Ocean.

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