Google Sight Seeing (maps)

My new addiction is googlesightseeing why bother seeing the world for real? – people send him Google satellite images of people and places around the earth doing crazy things. One of a guy peeing in the desert in Africa (thrilling discussion here), “keeping up with the Joneses” (rows and rows of long piers in Texas), whale-spotting, and monitoring where Google uses *stock* imagery (such as the pre-hurricane Katrina images of New Orleans fiasco that broke last week).

There’s a physical hardcopy book called Off the Map. Perhaps Big Brother Road Tour would be more appropriate?

EDIT (TO BE MORE GROWN UP): On the off chance that you are starting to feel this blog is getting too personal, superficial and un-businesslike (reeeeaaaaallly?) here’s what I was thinking about: Top Gear used this blog (googlesightseeing) to notify everyone of a Bugatti Veyron test drive at a top secret Volkswagen facility in Germany.

The BBC’s Top GearOpens in a new tab. program recently took the Bugatti VeyronOpens in a new tab. for a quick test drive — a very quick test drive1Opens in a new tab.. James May was asked to test the car’s top speed, and there was apparently only one place in the world it could be done — Volkswagen’s super-secret test facility in Germany, Ehra-Lessien.

Why? Because Ehra-Lessien has an unbroken straight 9 kilometres in length, which you can see running along the top of our thumbnails. It’s so long, that if you stood on one side of the straight, you wouldn’t be able to see the other end due to the curvature of the Earth. Seriously, this straight is enormous. One or two thumbnails just couldn’t do it justice, so we’ll do it in two parts. Here’s the northern end

…and then we have to skip a couple of thumbnails before we get to the southern end!

There’s several cars visible on the straight, including one that seems to be going really very fast.


There’s also a small blob — which is either some kind of bug on the image, or a very strange new kind of concept-tractor.

Anyway, while May couldn’t get the Veyron up to its theoretical top speed, he did manage to equal the fastest speed of any production road car, reaching an almost incomprehensible 253 miles, or 407 kilometres per hour2Opens in a new tab. on this very straight. You can watch the clip on Google VideoOpens in a new tab. to really get a feel for how fast that is.

Thanks to Top Gear.

As a marketing tool, getting the word out to a top blogger or two, in a truly creative marketing way (*secret piccies by secret satellite of a secret test track of a top-secret car*) will do more for your brand than the millions you spend on advertising in traditional media. Plus it’s cool.

Anyway, it’s raining, so I’m going to disappear into World of Warcraft for a few hours. For Teh (!) Horde!

Laurel Papworth

Named by Forbes™ Magazine in the Top 50 Social Media Influencers globally, named Head of Industry, Social Media (Marketing Magazine™) and in the Power150 Media bloggers (AdAge™). CERT IV Training and Assessment certified trainer (Diplomas and Certificates etc) Adult Education. Laurel has manager Facebook Pages for Junior Masterchef, Idol, Big Brother etc. and have consulted on private online communities for banks Westpac, not for profits UNHCR & governments in SE Asia. Lecturer, social media, University of Sydney for 10 years and Laurel has 11,000 online students. Laurel Papworth personally connects to 6 million followers online and has taught around 100,000 people in the last 10 years how to be social media managers.

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