2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009 - 2008 - 2007 - 2006 - 2005 - 2004 - 2003 - 2002 - 2001 - 2000 - 1999 - 1998 - 1997 - 1996
Note: links (over 500) are not maintained and may not work.
25 December, 2005 to 1 January, 2006
Growth of a Nation
This brilliant 10-minute presentation illustrates
the growth of the United States from the original 13 colonies to the 50
states of today. Make sure sound is on; you can play, pause, rewind. If
you roll your mouse over states you can see their names, or click on
individual states for more details. Click Rivers for their names. You
can also play with the timeline by dragging the pointer to look at
different periods more closely, or to expand the timeline decade by
decade. An expanded version is for sale for classroom use.
18 to 25 December
This is the web site for a second-year geography
course at Valparaiso University. It has a remarkable collection of map
galleries. The maps -- mostly GIFs, some PDFs -- provide a wealth of
interesting information on North American demographics: ethnicity,
culture, religion, voting patterns, and more.
11 to 18 December
Map of the London Underground
Oskar Karlin created this amazing map for a
design-school project. He decided to re-design the traditional London
Underground Map based not on cost or distance or simplicity, but on the
time a journey takes. Read the entire story, see maps he had to create
along the way, and finally download the final projects in pdf format.
4 to 11 December
Map of the Star
Not official, but an interesting attempt to map
the Galaxy Far Far Away, by somebody who is obviously a huge fan. Go back one level to see the
many different Star Wars data, fan links, interviews, and more.
27 November to 4 December
Sports Map Project
The CommonCensus Sports Map Project is attempting
to calculate and map the areas within which fans of particular sports
teams live; maps are available for NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, and NCAA Football,
and are based on votes cast by users of the website. While a certain bias
might be expected because the voters are self-selected, the folks at
Common Census say that they have developed an algorithm that adjusts for
20 to 27 November
Google Globe Trotting
One of the most informative of the mushrooming
number of sites using features of google maps and google Earth to do
something interesting and useful. Here, users submit labeled images which
they have been able to identify among the highest-resolution google Earth
13 to 20 November
Transparency International is an NGO devoted to
combating corruption. They recently posted a world map based on their
Corruption Perceptions Index, a survey of business people and country
analysts. Worth a visit.
6 to 13 November
"Country information from around the world on over
260 countries", this site provides country information from around the
world. It is an excellent resource for business, tourists, students and
teachers. It includes both basic data -- such as maps, flags, and national
anthem sound files -- and more detailed information and links for all the
countries of the world.
30 October to 6 November
Lonely Planet World
From the producers of the Lonely Planet guides.
Select a region, then a country, and you can read about -- and see
pictures of -- the country. More "tourist-oriented" than many "World
Guide" sites, but all the facts a traveler could want plus basic history
and other related information.
23 to 30 October
BBC Country Profiles Site
The BBC maintains country profiles for every
country in the world; each section includes a timeline of major events and
links to BBC stories about the country.
16 to 23 October
The N-E-X-U-S Geography
News, books, and about 30 sub-categories of
geographic topics, from cartography to travel. A very handy geo-portal.
9 to 16 October
A fascinating and very comprehensive blog about
the things people are doing with Google Earth. Spend some time following
the different posts; Google Earth is very powerful, and Ogle Earth will
tell you some of the ways to make it work for you.
2 to 9 October
Blaeu's Atlas Maior
Taschen, a publisher in Cologne, has just released
Blaeu's remarkable atlas of the 1600's. It is a huge volume (compiled
from the original 11-volume set), weighs 7.2 kg, and has nearly 800 pages.
In case you're interested in buying it from Amazon, here's
25 September to 2 October
The Interactive Nolli
Giambattista Nolli's 1748 map of Rome was a
masterpiece: it was detailed, accurate and eschewed the prevailing
"bird's-eye" perspective for an overhead view. Researchers at the
University of Oregon have put together a major web site on Nolli's map,
complete with background and research papers. Most notable, though, is its
map engine, a Flash-based application that allows you to superimpose
layers on Nolli's map, with adjustable transparency. But the best part is
the satellite layer: make it semitransparent and see just how well Nolli's
map holds up, 257 years later.
18 to 25 September
A very elegant interface for using Google Maps or
Virtual Earth maps through a flash application. You can zoom in and out
without the display having to recrerate itself, and you can rotate the
map. It makes Google Maps' amazing powers even more accessible and
11 to 18 September
Ever wonder how your country's currency is doing,
compared to others? Probably you hear on a regular basis how it does
compared to the U. S. dollar. But what about against the Ghanaian cedi or
the Nicaraguan cordoba? Oanada.com carries all that information, updated
daily. More interesting from a cartographic point of view is that all that
can be mapped. Using a java applet, the change of a currency against all
other currencies can be mapped so you can see how your currency is doing
relative to the entire world, not just the USD. Opens with US/Germany,
but select any two countries and select "1 day" and it redraws the map for
4 to 11 September
Antique Maps Database
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology has
posted their collection of Antique Maps. Mostly China, but also contains
some world maps and maps of other regions. Best thing to do is to "browse
by region". Select a region and you'll get thumbnails and descriptions of
the available maps, then click and the map opens as a pdf file in
incredible detail. These are big files, 3 mb and larger, but worth the
28 August to 4 September
News Country Profiles
BBC News Country Profiles are powerful, thoroughly
researched, and very informative snapshots of all the countries of the
world, and most of the territories. Each full profile provides a guide to
the history, politics, and economics of a country, broken down into the
main categories of "Overview", "Facts", "Leaders", and "Media". You can
also listen to the country's national anthem, see maps, and cick to read
BBC News reports about the country and region. One of the best "country
summary" sites on the web.
21 to 28 August
Country Studies at
the Library of Congress
This website contains the on-line versions of
books previously published in hard copy by the Federal Research Division
of the Library of Congress under the Country Studies/Area Handbook Program
sponsored by the U.S. Department of Army. Because the original intent of
the Series' sponsor was to focus primarily on lesser known areas of the
world or regions in which U.S. forces might be deployed, the series is not
all-inclusive. At present, 101 countries and regions are covered. Notable
omissions include Canada, the United States, France, the United Kingdom,
and other Western nations, as well as a number of African nations. The
date of information for each country appears on the title page of each
country and at the end of each section of text.
14 to 21 August
This site on the fifty states (and the U.S.
commonwealths and territories) has information such as: location
(latitude and longitude), birds, colleges and universities, constitutions,
flowers, genealogical resources, geological formations, geographical
features, mottos, national forests and parks, newspapers, nicknames,
nonprofit organizations, populations, state and federal representatives,
songs, and the date of entry into the union. All facts are linked to over
1529 governmental or authoritative webpages.
7 to 14 August
Columbia Gazetteer of North America (at bartleby.com)
With 50,000 entries, this most comprehensive
encyclopedia of geographical places and features will prove invaluable to
anyone for whom places hold fascination and who require accurate data
about them. It covers every incorporated place and county in the United
States, along with several thousand unincorporated places, special-purpose
sites, and physical features, as well as Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean.
The backlink here, Bartleby.com is
the great storehouse of books online and worth browsing in depth.
31 July to 7 August
and Antarctic Research Center
The Arctic and Antarctic Research Center (AARC)
maintains an archive of more than 175,000 satellite passes of the Earth's
polar regions. At present, this database is over 16 Terabytes in size. The
AARC also provides data processing services to a wide variety of polar
researchers. The AARC supplies data to the National Snow and Ice Data
Center in collaboration with the National Science Foundation's Office of
Polar Programs. A very interesting and informative site for browsing.
24 to 31 July
Geography Pages at about.com
About.com is a resource that hires "guides" to
create and maintain websites on hundreds of topics. Matt Roseberg's
Geography site at about.com is one of the best. There are amazing
resources and links -- maps (filled in and blank), a "geography basics"
course by email, quizzes and links to other sites with quizzes, a weekly
newsletter, plus cultural issues, geographic history, and lots of late
news, including things like this year's "leap second". An important site
to bookmark. Matt and his wife Jennifer have also authored readable and
helpful books: The
Geography Bee Complete Preparation Handbook; and The
Handy Geography Answer Book.
17 to 24 July
Internet Public Library
In a widely-distributed, digital world, what is
the role of a library or a librarian? The Internet Public Library at the
University of Michigan seeks to explore answers to that question, by
providing a true on-line library, a deep and broad resource of content and
links. There are several sectons -- Subject collections lead you to
resources on everything from gender to computer platforms, the Ready
Reference collection leads to on-line almanacs, calendars, etc., and there
is plenty of good reading in digitized books. Check out the KidSpace and
TeenSpace as well, and the Special Collections. Worth a bookmark!
10 to 17 July
Google Sightseeing Blog
A wonderful little site for both exploring Google
and exploring the world. The people who run this blog, and others who
submit items, are digging deeply into Google Maps and reporting on the
different places around the Earth that it's possible to see close-up in
Google's amazing imagery.
3 to 10 July
Based in Aurora, Colorado, McREL was incorporated
in 1966 as one of ten Regional Educational Laboratories, nonprofit
organizations created to help educators bridge the gap between research
and practice. Today, McREL draws upon the best of more than 30 years of
education research to create practical, user-friendly products that help
educators create classrooms that provide all students with opportunities
for success. This is just their lesson-plans page: select a topic, and
within that topic, examine an archive of lesson plans, and an archive of
26 June to 3 July
Anti-California Page at Whither-Whatever
Among the resources at etherfarm, there is a blog
called whither-whatever; here, and elsewhere on the site, there are many
interesting geography bits and pieces and threads. This is one. Note
that there are some rather "impolite" posts here; don't read this page if
you're likely to find strong language offensive.
19 to 26 June
World Resources Institute is an independent
nonprofit organization with a staff of more than 100 scientists,
economists, policy experts, business analysts, statistical analysts,
mapmakers, and communicators working to protect the Earth and improve
people's lives. Their website is rich with data, tools, and all kinds of
information about the Earth.
12 to 19 June
Resources and Services
Traveling somewhere new this year, and worried
about the language barrier? One good place to begin is TravLang. Select
the language you speak, and the language you wish to learn, and the site
returns a collection of word lists -- basic words, numbers,
shopping/dining, travel, directions, places, and time and dates. After
you've reviewed the list, you can take a little test on the words and
5 to 12 June
Sunrise, Sunset, and Twilight
A powerful and fascinating little web tool.
First, tell the computer what kind of location you are giving it -- an
airport code or name, a city name, or a latitude and longitude -- and
then, enter the code, name, or lat/long in the little box at the bottom of
the table, and hit "compute". It returns the latitude and longitude of
the desired location, plus local time, length of day, and times of
sunrise, sunset, and both morning and evening twilight. You can also
specify a particular date, view or change the time zone of the returned
result, and control results in a variety of ways, such as requesting a
table of data for a period of time up to 1 year.
29 May to 5 June
The GeoNet Game
A very nice little interactive game on the
Houghton Mifflin Eduplace website. Select a region, and a sub-region, and
then select from several categories of questions, based around the
Standards and the Five Themes. You can also select a level of difficulty
for the questions your are asked. The game works well, and there are
little rewards along the way.
22 to 29 May
The Nine Planets is an overview of the history,
mythology and current scientific knowledge of each of the planets and
moons in our solar system. Each page has text and images, some have sounds
and movies, and links to related information.
15 to 22 May
the Solar System
The Hawai'ian Astronomical Society has created an
amazing astronomical Web site called "Views of the Solar System". The
site tells you just about everything you could ever want to know about
most of the astronomical objects in our solar system, gives information
about the history of astronomy and space travel, and offers stunning
pictures and movies from around the Solar System.
8 to 15 May
Picture of the Day
One of my very favorite websites, the "Astronomy
Picture of the Day" site features a new high quality image daily, with a
description of its significance written by a professional astronomer in
clear, easy to understand terms. Recent images (as of this writing) were
"Water on Mars" and "NGC 1316: After Galaxies Collide". If you miss one,
don't worry, there's an extensive archive going back several years.
1 to 8 May
Rulers of the
An amazingly detailed and useful site. From their
own description: "This site contains lists of heads of state and heads of
government (and, in certain cases, de facto leaders not occupying either
of those formal positions) of all countries and territories, going back to
about 1700 in most cases. Also included are the subdivisions of various
countries (the links are at the bottom of the respective country entries),
as well as a selection of international organizations. Recent foreign
ministers of all countries are listed separately." To see how incredibly
complete this list is, check out the page Se-So, and read about Somalia;
you get information not just about Italian and British Somaliland, and
occupation of each by the other, with all their administrators, plus
Independent Somalia since 1960 with Presidents and Prime Ministers, but
you also get the Somali Counter-Government at Baidoa, and the breakaway
Republic of Somaliland, plus other autonomous or would-be autonomous
states, such as Puntland, Jubaland, and Southwestern Somalia.
24 April to 1 May
RefDesk is what the WWW ought to be about. If you
need a fact, of any kind, you can find a link here to a resource that will
answer your question and find your fact. Maps, music, weather, post codes,
newspapers, US and Global telephone codes, quotations, movies, sports, tv,
etc., etc., etc. They also have a "site of the day" (review the archive),
a "thought for the day", and a "word for the day", as well as all kinds of
other "daily diversions" and pictures. An absoultely stupendous resource.
17 to 24 April
Select a continent, select a country -- and you
are transferred to the Lonely Planet guide for that Country. Amazing
detail, including everything you need to know about getting there, getting
around, etc. Most revealing is the section called "postcards", which
include comments from individual travelers about their experiences, both
good and bad, what to watch out for, what not to miss, etc. Anyone
planning a trip needs to visit this site.
10 to 17 April
Lights at Night
These images of Earth's city lights are
downloadable in a variety of sizes; as the site explains, the map "was
created with data from the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP)
Operational Linescan System (OLS). Originally designed to view clouds by
moonlight, the OLS is also used to map the locations of permanent lights
on the Earth's surface." Be sure to see the other "Blue Marble" imagery.
3 to 10 April
European Route Planner
From Michelin, a very comprehensive and highly
accurate route-planning website. You can give a specific address, a
station or airport, or just "central" for your departure site and
destination, and before it draws your route, the program gives you several
choices to improve the accuracy of your map. You can also bring up maps by
postcode, city, region, or country, as well as all kinds of information.
(Note: by default, this page assumes you're in the UK, but that has no
effect on driving directions between any two countries.)
27 March to 3 April
A compact political world globe applet online,
this dandy little site is brilliantly simple and elegant. You can roll
the globe yourself, or go directly to a country of your choice by
selecting it from a list, and then either zoom in or out. Especially nice
is the way that it zooms out to move to a new country, and then zooms back
in, so that you get a sense of direction and location. Bookmark this!
20 to 27 March
A small and easy-to-use site that processes any
two cities of your choice and gives back the Latitude and Longitude of
each, plus the distance and bearing between them. A nice feature is that
the program also returns a map showing the two cities.
13 to 20 March
Just a tiny sampling of the streaming broadcast
radio from around the world that you can hear from your computer. You'll
need the RealAudio or WindowsMedia player, but most sites offer you the
latest players and make it easy to play their audio streams. The best way
to find what you want is to search -- here's a google search for streaming+radio+guides that will direct you to the many guides that may help you find what you
6 to 13 March
The Embassy of Spain in Canada sponsors this site,
which offers extensive, handy, and up-to-date reference information on
everyday Spain, and on Spanish life, history, language, and culture.
Very extensive and interesting site for people traveling to Spain, or
interested in Spain, or studying Spanish.
27 February to 6 March
A model of what an online national atlas can be;
an archive of maps and related information about Canada's physical and
political geography, and about Canada's people. Map sections include
"environment", "people and society", "economy", "history", "climate
change", "freshwater", and "health", and there are reference maps, lesson
plans, curriculum planning information, and a section of "facts about
canada". An amazingly extensive archive.
20 to 27 February
From the site: "NASA Spacelink is one of NASA's
electronic resources specifically developed for use by the educational
community. Spacelink is a comprehensive electronic library that contains
current information related to NASA's aeronautics and space research.
Teachers, faculty, and students will find that Spacelink offers not only
information about NASA programs and projects, but also teacher guides and
pictures that can enhance classroom instruction. While NASA understands
that people from a wide variety of backgrounds will use NASA Spacelink,
the system is specifically designed for educators and students."
13 to 20 February
Presented in a blog format -- High Points of all
the states, a "world's highest" section, a news blog and forum, trip
reports, and all kinds of other interesting information on the US's and
the world's high points. For now, you can also visit their old "web page"
format by going to http://americasroof.com/index2.php.
6 to 13 February
The Virtual Tourist
A member-driven website with over 500,000 members
from over 200 countries and territories sharing their experiences and tips
and evaluations of places to visit, places to stay, places to eat. If
you're planning a trip anywhere, it's worth checking here to read some of
the latest tips. The "who we are" for the site says the members
contributions are "unbiased"; clearly this is not so. There are all kinds
of biases presented here; example: you'll see the same hotel panned for
being "too small" or "too distant" and also being praised for being
"lovely and small" and "an easy bus ride from town". So read with an open
mind. Lots of valuable insights here.
30 January to 6 February
Developed by the Department of Atmospheric
Sciences (DAS) at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC),
WW2010 (the weather world 2010 project) is a WWW framework for
integrating current and archived weather data with multimedia
instructional resources using new and innovative technologies. This
particular page is their "current weather" page; use it to view
sophisticated and comprehensive maps and images for both surface
observations, satellite imagery, and radar weather. But explore the whole
WW2010 site; there is a lot of information archived here.
23 to 30 January
Department Travel Page
The U.S. State Department's Travel Information
Pages. Read public announcements about immediate warnings and dangers,
read consular information sheets about every country in the world, read
their "tips for travelers", and also read all kinds of visa and passport
information. Page also includes links to US embassies and consulates
worldwide, and to other government sites.
16 to 23 January
A site that tries to give all the visa information
for every country in the world. Open the page, select a region, select a
country, and there's a list of who needs a visa and who doesn't and what
it might cost and how to get it and all kinds of other information.
There are also links to worldwide embassies of that country and also to
foreign embassies IN that country. The best reading on the site is
the FAQ; especially, read and enjoy the last 3 questions
9 to 16 January
A very interesting site. Be sure to read the
explanations and FAQ's. You can use lat/long or airport codes to get back
the great circle route and distance between any two points on the Earth.
Fascinating to look at the routes in detail. Look at SIN-LAX (Singapore
to Los Angeles, presently the longest non-stop route flown by any
carrier), or the other super-long routes, such as HKG to ORD (Hong Kong to
Chicago). There are plans for a Sydney-to-Rio schedule sometime this
year; take a look at that route -- directly over Antarctica.
2 to 9 January
Shirley Lewis, also known as The Bag Lady, is a
woman on a mission; the mission is, briefly, "Do You need that
bag?" -- reducing the use of plastic bags and other non-recyclables, and
clearing the world of litter. She has helped businesses figure out how to
benefit themselves and their clients by asking "Need a bag" in just the
right way; she addresses schools and other organizations, and works with
governmental entities and NGO's. Based in Northern Ireland, she travels
extensively. Her website is full of information about what she does, who
her colleagues are, and how she can help your school, church, or
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