Saturday, October 11, 2008

See sensitive habitats on Google Earth!

Two new and exciting projects were presented at a congress of the International Union for Conservation of Nature. This was a gathering of almost 11,000 volunteer scientists, more than 1,000 governments and non-government organizations that represent about 160 countries.

First, Google Earth has launched a tool that will enable people to see those places in the oceans they would love to see but can't since they are areas of sensitivity.

Steve Miller is the Google Earth project manager and said that the "layer" (what the tool is called) was the end result of a yearlong project. And it was meant to let conservationists take hard science to the public in a way that will entertain them.

Go here to check out the press release and here to download Google Earth!

Another presentation was by National Geographic which unveiled a live, continuous underwater video feed of a coral reef off of Belize. It's called WildCam Belize Reef.

National Geographic is known for attaching cameras to both land and sea animals and then sharing the footage but this live cam project is believed to be the first experiment to provide a nonstop, live feed.

The press release uses the propaganda technique of dropping names since it talks about how many governments are on board for this project, not to mention that both Google and National Geographic are HUGE names.

I've used Google Earth and actually like it. I'll be checking both of these out because I feel swayed by all that positive and exciting propaganda! Especially the part were Torre Stockard of National Geographic's remote imaging department saw a shark swim by while drinking coffee and checking out the reef! Why don't ya'all jump on the bandwagon with me?

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