Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Google mapping pollution with homing pigeons

PigeonBlog Google maps air pollution via homing pigeons - Here is a description of the PigeonBlog from the site: "PigeonBlog provides an alternative way to participate in environmental air pollution data gathering. The project equips urban homing pigeons with GPS enabled electronic air pollution sensing devices capable of sending real-time location based air pollution and image data to an online mapping/blogging environment. Pigeonblog is a social public experiment between human and non-human animals."

A Google Map shows you the flight of each of these pigeons in various departure points around the city of San Jose, USA. This is not a real-time view. Dates show you when these flights were recorded and an amazing amount of data is able to be viewed as you watch the flight. A nitrogen oxide meter displays the low, medium and high levels as you watch the bird reach varying altitudes. In terms of mashup design this one is a winner. Change color schemes, Hit pause, fast forward or rewind as you watch the pigeon flight, and the data collection pane view is awesome. You can even see the name of the pigeon you are watching from the flock list along the bottom. To learn more about the project and there is an extensive amount of info on the site to read through. This is a great use of Google Maps to geographically call attention to an environmental issue.

Google News: PigeonBlog coverage
Flickr Images: PigeonBlog
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