Wow. What a treat! Time Wasters of the Earth (and elsewhere!) UNITE!
Not content with just mapping the planet, and thereby creating endless opportunities for time-wasting at the office :) , those good folk at Google have turned their attentions outward and have now released Google Sky – a mapping program that lets you view the stars and planets of the universe with all the fuctions of Google Earth! You can zoom in and out, zapping across the cosmos at warp speed, overlay photos from the Hubble Telescope, get balloon paragraphs of information, see the planets orbits over time, even overlay the constellations – just about anything really!
Google sky covers some 100million stars and 200million galaxies, using a million interlocking images to create their incredibly impressive skyscapes. What a boon for amateur astronomers everywhere!
Now, I’m wondering whether Google did this out of philanthropic interests, or to get the jump on those building interplanetary rockets – it’s the perfect basis for one hell of a star-mapping / navigation program they’ve got here! I know, I’m being cynical. But cynicism aside, I really do think this is a wonderful achievement and brings science to the populace in an amazingly interactive manner. Anything that helps people learn is a good thing by me… And, should it in the future be made into a star nav program, well, I guess Google would deserve the billions they’d reap and I shouldn’t begrude them.
Listen to me – going all cynical in my old age.. :)
How utterly fantastic. Really. Blessings on those good folk at Google for bringing the universe to us in such a user-friendly way. Well done you!