Virtual Tourism

Virtual tourism, google maps mashup, google video

UK Street View Gallery

With the release of Street View in the UK I have been working on producing a gallery of some of the UK's top tourist destinations, as caught by Street View.

This one is still very much a work in progress but is a good way to quickly view some of the most astounding images caught by Google Maps Street View.

UK Street View Gallery

Santa Monica Pier

Santa Monica has had several piers over the years, however the current Santa Monica Pier is actually two adjoining piers that long had separate owners. The long, narrow Municipal Pier opened 9 September 1909 and the short, wide adjoining Pleasure Pier to the south.

The pier contains Pacific Park, a family amusement park with a large Ferris wheel. It also has a carousel from the 1920s, an aquarium, shops, entertainers, an arcade, a trapeze school, a pub, and restaurants. The end of the pier is a popular location for anglers.

View a video of Santa Monica Pier on Google Maps

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Taal Volcano, Philippines

Taal Volcano is a stratovolcano on the island of Luzon in the Philippines. It is situated between the towns of Talisay and San Nicolas in Batangas. It consists of an island in Lake Taal, which is situated within a caldera formed by an earlier, very powerful eruption. It is located about 50 km (31 Miles) from the capital, Manila. It is one of the active volcanoes in the Philippines, all part of the Pacific ring of fire.

The volcano has erupted violently several times, causing loss of life in the populated areas surrounding the lake, the current death toll standing at around 5,000 - 6,000.

View a video of Taal Volcano on Google Maps

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The Soul Nebula

I've added another video from the excellent Spitzer Hidden Universe series by NASA to the Star Viewer map. This video is of the Star Nebula (aka W5 or IC 1848.

The Soul Nebula is an emission nebulae in Cassiopeia. Several small open clusters are embedded in the nebula: CR 34, 632, and 634 (in the head) and IC1848 (in the body). The object is more commonly called by the cluster designation IC 1848. Small emission nebula IC 1871 is present just left of the top of the head, and small emission nebulae 670 and 669 are just below the lower back area.

The Orion Nebula

I've added a video to the Star Viewer map. The video is from the excellent Spitzer Hidden Universe series.

The video is all about the The Omega Nebula, or M17. M17 is a star-forming region in the constellation of Sagittarius and is about 6,000 light years away. The cloud of interstellar matter of which this nebula is a part is roughly 40 light-years in diameter.

Twit Map

This week I've taken a break from producing tourism related maps. Instead I've been working on developing a Twitter Map called Twit Map.

The idea behind the map is to produce a map of Twitter feeds to do with local issues. At the moment you can select the Twitter feeds from a number of Governors in the US and local councils in the UK. There are also feeds for local and national newspapers.

I will add other categories to the map as I think of them. At the moment the map is in beta, which means it is still under development and you may come across the occasional bug.

You can follow me on Twitter - http://twitter.com/KeirClarke