Best of the Blogs 24 March 2015

By on 24 March, 2015

Earth Porn

Drone Life’s video of the day is the latest in Christian Welzel’s ‘Earth Porn’ series, which shows amazing landscapes captured from his drones. In this episode, he shows viewers the stunning Canadian wilderness.

Also notably, Drone Life has a story telling the news that Google has scrapped its Project Wing UAV design (previous coverage of Australian tests here), due to it being difficult to control, and is looking to create a new version.


NextGov inform readers that Amazon has announced that is now hosting more than 85,000 Landsat images, allowing developers to use any of Amazon’s on-demand services to perform analysis and create new products without needing to worry about storage or bandwidth costs. Indeed, companies like Esri, Mapbox, MathWorks, Planet Labs, and Development Seed have launched already new projects and applications using the data. A boon for EO researchers, no doubt.

Indeed, GeoAwesomeness has a post outlining Mapbox’s project, which now provides the most up-to-date imagery for its maps.


IEEE Spectrum talk of Microsoft’s Power Map plugin, and guide you through creating a map using Excel in under 5 minutes.

Also on IEEE Spectrum, but in autonomous vehicle news, it seems that Tesla Motors will be rolling out a software upgrade for its Model S cars this Summer in the US that will enable self-driving on major roads and freeways. The ‘auto pilot’ feature combines active cruise control with lane detection. Quite an abrupt occurrence!


Maps Mania’s Maps of the Week include: Vector Map, an amazing map of the world, complete with 3d extruded buildings and roads with animated traffic; The Hours of Direct Sunlight map, which shows the yearly average number of hours of direct sunlight received each day in Wellington (and has a great visual style, to boot); and Divvy Trips, which is a beautiful, animated mapped visualisation of bike trips on the Divvy bike sharing network in Chicago.


Given that I’m about to embark on my own epic adventure, I am particularly interested in the latest Strange Map from Big Think, which highlights 47 maps prepared by Her Majesty’s government of areas around the world you should avoid, eloquently entitled ‘On Her Majesty’s S#*t List.

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