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Harvard Quilt #3
|| 2/25/2009 || 1:42 pm || Comments Off on Harvard Quilt #3 || ||

: rendered at 18,000 X 12,000 :
Harvard Quilt Number 3 by Nikolas R. Schiller

The other day I decided to snoop around on some of my old hard drives and discovered that I had quite a bit of imagery that I never used to create a map. Yesterday I decided to use some of this imagery to make today’s map. It features .3 meter per pixel imagery that was taken in 2002 of the area around Harvard University.

What is interesting about this imagery is that its really not .3 meters per pixel, but closer to .6 meters per pixel. I found this out when I was post-processing this map and discovered that when the imagery is viewed at its full resolution it becomes quite blurry. At first I thought that I had screwed up and over-projected the map, but when I reopened the source imagery I discovered that it was blurry to begin with. Had I known this, I would have only rendered the map at 9,000 x 6,000 (one half the current size) because this downsampling would make the map less blurry.

Anyways, I haven’t been as active on the mapping front because I’ve made just about every major city in America. I still intend on publishing an atlas featuring all of these maps, but I have yet to find an interested publisher and am wary about going down the self-publishing route. I would, however, love to start mapping cities in Europe. Please contact me if you can obtain public domain imagery of any European city.

View the Google Map of Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts

: detail :

Do you see the heart within a heart?

View the rest of the map details:

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Google FINALLY updates the imagery of Washington, DC and now you can kinda see the message on my rooftop
|| 1/21/2009 || 4:30 pm || Comments Off on Google FINALLY updates the imagery of Washington, DC and now you can kinda see the message on my rooftop || ||

Back in July of 2007 I found that Google was censoring the imagery of downtown Washington, DC. This discovery lead to an article that was featured on the front page of the Metro section of the Washington Post. In the time since, Google has not updated the imagery, even after the release of Street View for Washington, DC.

The other day they finally decided to update the imagery of Washington, DC. I believe they did this because there were millions of people coming to Washington for the inauguration and they would have been showing them outdated imagery on their maps. Now that the imagery has been updated, you can almost see the message on my rooftop that I installed in the summer of 2006. Since the imagery has a somewhat low spatial resolution, its slightly difficult to make out the words “No War,” and it kinda looks like “No W@R.” Below is the photograph that appeared on the front page of the Style Section of the Washington Post in March of 2007 which shows me standing next to the now-visible rooftop sign.


“The mapmaker on his Washington roof with a message that he hopes will someday be reflected in both government aerial photography and the art he creates from that imagery.” (Photo by Michael Williamson — The Washington Post)


The Grand Juxtaposition
|| 11/15/2008 || 6:38 pm || Comments Off on The Grand Juxtaposition || ||

Back in March of this year, I mentioned that I was in the process of making another interactive environment for the Lost Series. The concept behind “The Grand Juxtaposition” is to put two unrelated images originally featured in a previous blog entry together on the same page. This is achieved by giving the viewer two random pictures from somewhere on this website upon each loading of the web page. In the background of the page, the viewer is shown a random image from my posters folder (which contains over 2,000 different images) and in the foreground the viewer is being shown an image from my images folder (which contains over 500 different images). Upon clicking on the image in the foreground, the next page that loads will be the inverse, where a graphic from the posters folder is placed in the foreground and the a graphic from the image folder is used in the background. Generally speaking, most entries on this website feature images from either one of the two folders and by placing them together on one page, I’ve created a grand juxtaposition to showcase this website’s visually diverse content.



Related Interactive Entries:

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Google Street View of Washington, DC suffers from out-dated imagery
|| 11/6/2008 || 5:53 pm || Comments Off on Google Street View of Washington, DC suffers from out-dated imagery || ||

As a cutesy election day surprise, Google announced the release of their Street View feature for the Google Maps of Washington, DC. For the last year and a half I’ve been waiting for Google Maps to include the city I live in, while at the same time planning my next installment of my geopolitical art project Google Street View IED , the first google bomb for Street View.

In June of 2007, around the time Street View was first released, Washington, DC’s imagery was “updated” with newer aerial photography from 2005. However, the central business district of Washington, DC continues to this day being shown using out-dated imagery from 2002, and the rest of the District is being shown using the newer imagery from September 2005. In the time since this”update”, even after I assisted in exposing this passive censorship in the Washington Post, the imagery has not been updated and because of this the new Street View feature suffers.

In the screen grab above you are being shown the massive parking lot known as City Center which was the site of the former convention center. The old convention center was imploded in December of 2004, which makes a gross mismatch. By using outdated imagery the convention center is still being shown on the Google Map, but the Street View imagery shows a completely different temporal view. The disturbing part of all of this is that the USGS imagery is completely available to anyone in the world to download. It’s already being used by Google Maps for the rest of Washington, DC and I’ve been using in my maps as well.

So, Google, when are you going to update your imagery? If its for security reasons, why release Street View? This provides far more “on the ground” information the aerial views profide. Please tell your content providers that the imagery of Washington, DC deserves an update so you can better serve your customers. Maybe you can use your new satellite?



Related Google Maps Entries:

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Wasilla, Alaska is literally off the map, the Google Map that is
|| 9/4/2008 || 8:34 pm || Comments Off on Wasilla, Alaska is literally off the map, the Google Map that is || ||

The Republican Party’s vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin is the former mayor of Wasilla, Alaska. Tonight this website had a visitor from Wasilla, Alaska who looked at this statehood-related map. Upon looking at the city on Google Maps, I found out that Wasilla is a border city where the imagery of the geography shows only a portion of the city using new high-resolution imagery. In some ways, this map proves that Republican Party’s vice-presidential choice was literally off the map.



UPDATE – Due to the presidential election, Google has updated their imagery of Wasilla, Alaska.


Related Google Map Entries:

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One year later and Google Maps has still not updated DC
|| 7/23/2008 || 1:41 pm || Comments Off on One year later and Google Maps has still not updated DC || ||

One of the little plugins I installed on this WordPress blog was a link at the bottom of each post which shows what I had posted the year before. The other day I noticed that my research related to censorship of Washington, DC on Google Maps, which culminated into the lead article in the Metro section of the Washington Post had appeared. I decided to check out Google Maps to see if there had been any updates and to my non-surprise, there hadn’t been. All I can say is: “what gives?” DC residents are still looking at downtown Washington, DC from 6 years ago. People visiting the MSM of the American Indian are still seeing it under construction, the newly built dorms on GWU‘s campus are still not being shown, and the list goes on….. So when will the imagery be updated? When will DC residents get to enjoy the benefits of Street View? Google has office in DC to lobby elected officials, but they’ve chosen to keep imagery of their own office outdated. This doesn’t make sense to me.

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What the Artomatic 2008 venue looked like in March of 2005
|| 5/6/2008 || 4:34 pm || Comments Off on What the Artomatic 2008 venue looked like in March of 2005 || ||

My next map will feature the area around the 2008 Artomatic venue. On Google Maps, which currently shows the geography in April of 2002, the location is still a parking lot. Since the venue is located within the 12 mile perimeter of passive censorship on Google Maps you don’t see the construction or completion of the office building.



Digital Globe: Where did DC’s roads go?
|| 3/5/2008 || 12:27 pm || Comments Off on Digital Globe: Where did DC’s roads go? || ||


Digital Globe's Image Browser

Screen grab featuring DC with very few roads

I was looking at Digital Globe’s website the other day and I decided to zoom into Washington, DC. The result was a map that only shows the major highways around the area. What is missing, however, are all the roads in DC, even the ones that connect to the “major highways” outside of the District. While the roads are not really needed to find locations of imagery, I’ve come to the conclusion that this is a good example of how an on-line mapping environments can leave out a lot more content than what should be included. Since this map environment was designed to seek Digital Globe’s imagery, not highways, it would make more sense that the base layer shows archive satellite imagery and not ugly vector graphics that incompletely show the major transportation routes in DC.

Notice:
– Two different city centers: Washington + Washington, DC
– In the margin map, the star next to Columbia is not District of Columbia, but South Carolina
– In the margin map, all cities are capitals as well
Gallaudet University is the only university shown



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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Denver Quilt #2
|| 1/9/2006 || 2:38 pm || Comments Off on Denver Quilt #2 || ||

: rendered at 18,000 X 12,000 :
Denver Quilt #2 by Nikolas R. Schiller

After looking through my archives, it appears that I never put the first Denver Quilt online! I know I have a copy of it in my iPhoto repository (I keep the final versions of my maps there so I can, at few clicks of a mouse, order prints on demand), but I am surprised that I never posted anything about it. I remember that it was a Diamond Quilt Projection because that was all that I knew how to make at the time! I also believe I made a Denver Mandala as well, so it looks like I have some searching to do in my archives and some processing as well!

I remade the Denver source imagery for this map and oddly I found that I already had two versions saved, but both were not perfect squares (as mentioned before). This version uses my favorite quilt projection and it turned out decently.

I only wish that I would have used slightly less light or post-processed the map (adjusting for contrast) to make it slightly darker. I must say that getting the lighting right is one of the hardest, but most crucial aspects to making these maps. Light is a destructive force because once the imagery has been sufficiently bleached in a scene, the post-processing can only regain so much of what was lost in tone and contrast.

Up next I have a slew of maps from Philly! I have one that finished rendering this morning that I have to process this evening. And there is also another one being rendered right now. I made 4 different tessellations of the source imagery of Philly, so I expect there to be quite a bit of variety in the end. Normally I don’t make multiple tessellations with the source imagery, and instead rely on one tessellation for each specific geographic location. There are some exceptions, but this series is sure to end up rather interesting.

View Rendering Details:

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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.

::THE QUILT PROJECTION::

Square
Square

Diamond
diamond

Hexagon
hexagon

Octagon
octagon

Dodecagon
Dodecagon

Beyond
beyond

::OTHER PROJECTIONS::

The Lenz Project
Lenz

Mandala Project
Mandala

The Star Series


Abstract Series
abstract

Memory Series
Memory

Mother Earth Series
Mother Earth

Misc Renderings
Misc

::POPULAR MAPS::

- The Los Angeles Interchanges Series
- The Lost Series
- Terra Fermi
- Antique Map Mashups
- Google StreetView I.E.D.
- LOLmaps
- The Inaugural Map
- The Shanghai Map
- Ball of Destruction
- The Lenz Project - Maps at the Library of Congress
- Winner of the Everywhere Man Award

::MONTHLY ARCHIVES::

:: LAST VISITORS ::



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  • thank you,
    come again!