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W.M.G.F.: 360 Cities

So, in my recent internet travels, I came across this awesome site: 360 Cities

360 Cities is one of a host of sites that are exploring the concept the geospatial web, or geoweb.  The term geoweb refers to the combination of geographical data with the more abstract information available on the internet; think spatialization of information on a global scale.  Geographical indexing of the information available on the internet would allow for new ways of organizing, discovering and using that information beyond those made available by the most widely used paradigm on the internet today, keywords.  Most notably, the geospatial web has some serious implications in the development of immersive digital environments and augmented reality applications.

Some early developments in the field are likely familiar to many internet users.  One such development is photo geotagging.  Currently, many photo sharing sites, like Flickr, allow users to add geographical data to the photographs they upload.  This data then allows other users to explore photographs geographically, perhaps doing things like viewing photos of a planned vacation spot or checking out what other users find interesting in their own locales.

360 Cities takes this concept of photo geotagging to the next level.  The site is dedicated strictly to geo-mapped panoramic photography and the photographers behind them.  The site aims to promote panoramic photography as an art form, marketing tool and experiential medium.

Besides the fact that the panoramas are absolutely stunning, 360 Cities’ easy-to-use, spatially oriented browsing system makes exploring the photographs immensely pleasurable.  You can start with a particular location of interest, chosen from the initial world map.  Then start exploring, following a path of little arrows to nearby locales or clicking on the little globe to jump to a random spot far, far away.

I suggest starting with one of the following:

Be forewarned, you could get lost in there for hours…