Lately there has been some news surrounding Google Maps. As a result I’m obliged to sum things up. ThinkLemon style, surely.
First, it was called Google Maps (beta), then Local, and now Maps again. Probably because everyone was calling it Maps anyhow. The Google Blog explains more.
Second, Maps has expanded to continental Europe. Finally I’d say.
Not only are there more high-res images available, but also streetlevel maps where there used to be ‘greyness’. Take for instance this spot on the Dutch coast (Scheveningen). One could almost spot the make of the cars. Btw, Earth also features these high-res aerials and you can zoom in a wee bit more.
Over at Google Code they ran a survey, in December 2005, looking at a couple of webpages trying to find out which elements and their respective attributes are used most. And more importantly how they are used.
We took a sample of slightly over a billion documents, and looked at what elements were used on the most pages, what class names were used on the most pages, and so forth.
Pretty interesting read this Web Authoring Statistics study.
E.g. why would anyone use a <table>-tag and not put any <td> or <tr> inside? Beats me… Is it a remnant of MS ‘HTML’? Or someone deleting a table in a WYSIWYG environment? And there are more examples.
As of version 2.0 of WordPress you’ll get a caching feature, which means it’ll ‘remember’ the most frequent accessed static information from your blog. This way it’s supposed to not bother the database but make a ‘fast trip’ to the server to fetch these pieces of info. In the end this should make your weblog go faster, because the information is already there to present.
It’s official! Google Earth for the Mac is here. While Google Earth for the PC was stripped off its beta status, they’ve also released the Mac version. You’ll need OS X 10.4 and up (see the requirements).
Directly after upgrading this weblog, little over a week ago, I felt it was a little bit sluggish. Compared to the 1.5 version I was running before. Maybe it could be just the webserver as I’m running on a shared hosting solution. Therefore one of the neighbours could be having a party… again.
But finding it slow on and off I decided to see how slow or fast WordPress 2.0 really is. This new incarnation of everyone’s favorite weblog tool supports ‘object caching’. Caching generally is a good thing. The results? Hmmm not good…
Microsoft has decided. The feed indicator in IE 7 is still orange!
Most surprisingly it’s the same one that Firefox has. Well, not so much of a surprise, because it was the Mozilla foundation who kindly ‘donated’ it:
Thanks again to the Mozilla team for making the icon available and helping us do the right thing for all browser users.
It’s a good thing there’s some in-browser ‘standardisation’ on the RSS/Atom/Feed front. But what about those orange XML/RSS/Atom chicklets everywhere? How about some standardisation there? Maybe in conjunction with the above mentioned icon? Like so?
Like Yahoo! taking hold of del.icio.us. Just as LookSmart did with Furl. Update: The take-over sounds a little strange to me as Yahoo! was working on it’s own del.icio.us/Furl with their My Web 2.0 BETA. Which can save ‘personal’ pages and tag them. We’ll see where this goes…
Portable Firefox is ‘dead’, long live PortableApps.com. Great initiative John!
Now if you ever did care to walk around with your browser, office suite, media player, image editor, OS, *whatever you want*, on a USB Stick? take a look at this site. Most of it is *geek* stuff, but it’s an interesting development nonetheless.
BTW @John, did you ever have a chat with Bart Lagerweij? It seems to me you are both working in the same direction.
After an evening of trying out the non-public beta of Google Earth for Mac OS X I must say… YES! Finally.
I, and a lot of Mac owners, have been eager to run this piece of software on a Mac. And now we can. Not officially, because the download page at earth.google.com still mentions Apple Macintosh computers are not supported at this time (but we are working on it).
And they definitely are working on it. See the screenshot below.
All I can say right now, is:
It works. On my iBook 12″ (Tiger inSideTM) I can spin and zoom the Globe quite happily without resorting to *hacks*, Virtual Desktop, Remote Desktops, etc.
It’s buggy. It froze on me a couple o’ times. With all the options turned up, it hampers. A DirectX option on OS X???? Polygons are garbled. The app icons look like s… Images in popups don’t seem to work. And there’s probably more.
It’s NOT finished. So it is not expected to work YET! DO NOT COMPLAIN it is a non-public beta that happened to leak. Otherwise Google would’ve made publicly available.
It’s great. If you get motion-sickness too easily, don’t mess with the scroll-pad. 😉
This apps Useragent is ‘GoogleEarthMac/LT3.1.0371.0′. So the ‘network link’ people know now.
It’s a first for Google! As in: A first major software ‘leak’. A first major application on OS X (GMail Notifier was an excercise).
Compatibility? You’ll probably need a current (hefty) Apple product with the latest OS (X) and patches. But we’ll know for sure once they release it.
So how do YOU obtain a working version?
You’ll have to wait a little longer! Google is working on it. How long? Maybe a few days or months.
Or is it??? I’ve blogged about it before. Well, it was more a kind of ‘wishing out loud‘. But just yet the Google Earth fairy brought me a package. It looks, smells and tastes like a Mac app. Unfortunately I’m at work and my Mac is at home. So I cannot be sure.
A quick look around the package which bears the version number 3.1.0371.0 looks genuine enough. Whether somebody is pulling a prank, tries to make my Mac a bot or gave me an early Christmas gift I cannot tell at this point. Still have to finish off half a days work, rush home, eat and then, only then, start her up.
Think I’ll fake an upcoming flu. *cough* 😉