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Geovisual QR Code
|| 4/12/2008 || 5:42 pm || Comments Off on Geovisual QR Code || ||

: saved at 6,000 x 6,000 :
Geovisual QR Code by Nikolas Schiller

QR Code is a two-dimensional bar code created by Japanese corporation Denso-Wave in 1994. The “QR” is stands for “Quick Response,” and it operates very similar to traditional bar codes, but allows for more customization. QR Codes are common in Japan where they are currently the most popular type of two dimensional code. In recent weeks I’ve read about some very interesting uses of the code and decided to make something with it.

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National MSM of the American Indian on Google Maps; Why truncate the word Museum?
|| 3/31/2008 || 1:55 pm || 1 Comment Rendered || ||

Last night I was using Google Maps and discovered that the label for the National Museum of the American Indian has been truncated to be “National MSM of the American Indian.” This raised alarm because the shorthand for MSM is more recognized as “MainStream Media” not museum. Native Americans have been shortchanged for hundreds of years by the American government, and I found it downright rude that the museum’s name has been cartographically shortchanged as well. So why shorten the name?

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White House Peace
|| 3/13/2008 || 2:56 pm || Comments Off on White House Peace || ||

: rendered at 18,000 X 12,000 :White House Peace by Nikolas Schiller.

Similar to the Shanghai Map, this map uses Chinese characters as a decorative element. The source aerial photography of the White House was censored by the government before it was released to the public. I documented this about a year ago with my Lost Series project “The White House is off-limits to the public.” Unlike the Shanghai Map, I made a tessellation using the words for PEACE instead of placing the glyphs at the bottom. I was, however, thinking of revisiting this map in the near future and adding more text. As it is now, I think it’s somewhat plain, and deserves something else. I’m not sure what that ‘else’ is yet.

View the Google Map (which shows older imagery) of the White House.

View the rest of the details:

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Google’s View of D.C. Melds New and Sharp, Old and Fuzzy – Washington Post
|| 7/22/2007 || 4:39 pm || Comments Off on Google’s View of D.C. Melds New and Sharp, Old and Fuzzy – Washington Post || ||


Today my analysis concerning Google’s censorship of downtown Washington, DC made it into a story on the front page of the Metro section of the Washington Post.

Here are two snippets from the article by Jenna Johnson titled, “Google’s View of D.C. Melds New and Sharp, Old and Fuzzy”

The older images frustrate cartographer Nikolas Schiller, 26, who takes an artistic approach to mapmaking and is working on an atlas. Schiller, who lives in the U Street area, said that too much of the District is represented using the older photos, diminishing the amount of information — and thrill — that aerial photos can provide.

“Maps are about power,” he said. “Maps decide what gets developed, who lives where, how people get around.”

Schiller said he thinks Google should just use the 2002 map for the small spots the government has censored rather than the whole downtown area.

And he said he’s puzzled that any level of blurriness is needed by anyone — even the government — especially because he recently took a detailed tour of a nuclear reactor south of Detroit via Google Earth.

“Where is the concept of national security in this?” he asked.

By random chance, tomorrow’s map is the nuclear reactor mentioned in the article.

Read the entire article:

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U.S. Department of State Quilt
|| 7/16/2007 || 1:20 pm || Comments Off on U.S. Department of State Quilt || ||

: rendered at 18,000 X 12,000 :
U.S. Department of State Quilt by Nikolas Schiller

Following up on my discovery of Google’s censorship, I’ve decided to make my next maps be in the area in Washington, DC that is currently censored. By mapping this area, I can easily claim that I’ve beat Google to the map for each location.

The area around the State Department is one that is quite familiar to me. The dorm that I lived in for 2 different years at GWU is located in this map. Alongside the State Department Building (the largest building in the map), there is the Federal Reserve Building, Office of Personnel Management, National Academy of Sciences, and a few other of buildings of note, like the Red Cross HQ and the World Health Organization.

View the Google Map of the area around the State Department in Washington, DC.

View Map Details:

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A new change in Washington, DC’s imagery on Google’s servers
|| 7/10/2007 || 9:42 am || 2 Comments Rendered || ||

For the last 3 years I have followed how the aerial & satellite imagery of Washington, DC has been released, redacted, and remixed. This entry marks another important observation and a new discovery in Google Maps.

Last week I discovered the extent to which Google has updated their servers with the 2005 USGS aerial photography. My findings suggest that Google has censored much of downtown Washington, DC by not using a substanial amount of newer imagery.

Continue reading:

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Censored today in theMail…
|| 2/15/2007 || 6:05 am || Comments Off on Censored today in theMail… || ||

On Sunday I e-mailed Gary Imhoff who moderates the bi-weekly discussion list called theMail. This is the second time I have posted to the theMail, with the first being an e-flyer for “North South East Westminster,” and to be honest I am quite disappointed in the slight censorship Gary employed in my original entry. Specifically, he opted to not include what I feel to be the best piece of media: the Taxation Without Representation Google Map!

Here is what I sent to theMail:

The New DC Flag (if HR 328 passes) and other fractional media
Nikolas R. Schiller, DC [at] NikolasSchiller [dot] com
Co-Chair, DC Statehood Green Party

Fellow friends & enemies of fractional representation,

Last Thursday I received a phone call from the executive director of an organization that is promoting fractional democracy on behalf the disenfranchised residents of Washington, DC. I was kindly asked to refrain from using Photoshop to alter copyrighted images, even when done as a parody (see below). However, when an injustice is currently being promoted in the name of democracy, I cannot in good conscience be silent, or even 1/3 silent.

So to complete my fractional trilogy, I have redesigned the DC flag to represent the 1/3 representation DC residents will get with the passage of the unconstitutional DC Fair and Equal Voting Rights Act of 2007 (hr 328). I also created an animated version to accentuate the stupidity of claiming 1/3 representation as progress.

The flag is based on this proposed design:
http://www.dcwatch.com/issues/flagproposed.gif

The new DC Flag (if HR 328 passes):
http://www.nikolasschiller.com/images/flagproposed_text_left.gif
http://www.nikolasschiller.com/images/flagproposed_animated.gif

Fractionally Related (if HR 328 passes):
http://nikolasschiller.com/images/new_dc_plates.jpg
http://nikolasschiller.com/images/now_with_dc_vote.gif

Marginally 1/3 Related:
http://nikolasschiller.com/images/dc_is_the_capital_of.gif
http://nikolasschiller.com/images/utah_is_the_capital_of.gif
– Look at both and ask yourself, “Who is still getting screwed?”)

Interactive Google Map:
http://nikolasschiller.com/gis/taxationwithoutrepresentationmap.html
– This Google Map Mashup randomly plots 51 DC Flags around the U.S. Capitol and when clicked reveal 51 different messages about Washington, DC.

Don’t forget, if you have the time, take one-third of a day off work on Thursday and go to Capitol Hill and tell Congress what it’s like to be forced to take the backseat on the bus of democracy.

After the flap is what was actually distributed:

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Redacted Flag
|| 7/5/2005 || 7:44 am || Comments Off on Redacted Flag || ||

An American flag with Made In China blacked out

I didn’t make down to the National Mall for the fireworks last night. I opted to stay far far away from the crowds of people down there. Instead my friends and I went to a few house parties in Adams Morgan and we watched the fireworks from the rooftop of the Adams Morgan strip. I think we were on top of the block from Tom Tom to around Bossa- it was PIMP- just as cool as the penthouse in Rosslyn last year! I love the ability to walk along connected rooftops!

As we made our way back to my house for some post fireworks festivities, we ran into my neighbor who had just returned from the National Mall. We also had run into her earlier in the day as we were heading to the Nats game! She showed me the flag (above) that she had been given while on the mall for the festivities. She also pointed out that little black line in the bottom left corner of the flag. To my astonishment, this flag, which was given out to probably over 100,000+ spectators, was blacked out because it said “Made In China.”

This is piss poor judgment on behalf of those who organized the celebration! I mean COME ON! You’d think they’d have the smarts to hand out flags made in America on the 4th of July, right? Worse is that there had to be someone who went through all of flags and redacted the flags before they were handed out.

If you add what happened at RFK Stadium earlier in the day, I will remember this 4th of July as the least patriotic American anniversary I’ve ever experienced. I had a fun time at least :)


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Nikolas Schiller is a second-class American citizen living in America's last colony, Washington, DC. This blog is my on-line repository of what I have created or found on-line since May of 2004. If you have any questions or comments, please contact:

If you would like to use content found here, please consult my Fair Use page.

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  • thank you,
    come again!