Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Scout reservation photo map tracker

I've been shooting photos at Broad Creek Memorial Scout Reservation for about a year, uploading the shots to Google Earth via panoramio.com. I generally shrink the images to around 200K; the minimum size required is 100K, and I've found anything over a 500K JPEG might enlarge really well, but isn't necessary for the kind of photo mosaic carpeting I'm doing.

Noting the location of each shot is crucial. Those taken near cabins, roads, parking lots, and even fire pits can be spotted on the Panoramio maps pretty easily, if you remember generally where you were, but those taken on trails without satellite visible landmarks need more precise locations such as provided by a GPS.

Once you have an account on Panoramio, upload a few photos and mark their location, as well as giving a description. The description will allow your photo to be found on Google Earth, Google maps, and presumably, through other search venues.

Google Earth selects photos of landscape, although there may be people, animals, or other objects in them to a small degree. As an example, I had one shot of Scouts working on a trail that was originally rejected, but allowed in later on appeal. So don't take shots of your troop, with a cabin in the background, and expect it to make the cut. Instead, take a picture of the cabin, a trail, or some trees, with Scouts in the background for perspective.

Examples:


After a few days (or weeks, or less) photos in Panaramio are reviewed and marked as "selected for Google Earth", or rejected, depending. Some other time later, they will be visible in the Google Earth standalone application. Typing "Broad Creek Memorial Scout Reservation" into the search bar should take you to a list of choices. As of the other day, the top choice is:

That's a shot from a hike I took on the Red Trail in July 2009.

Now for some pretty cool stuff. Panoramio has instructions on embedding map graphics on your web page (like this blog). See: www.panoramio.com/help/embedding

I zoomed around until I was centered somewhere near Lake Straus, then followed their instructions to create 3 views. Each zooms in a little closer; the first is a map shot, the second a satellite shot, and the third a hybrid. Here's the code for the last one:


<iframe src="http://www.panoramio.com/plugin/?lt=39.688233&ln=-76.269021&z=1&user=1197306&k=2" width="450px" height="450px"></iframe>












Thanks to Ranger Rob for requesting this material, and for Scout Exec Ethan for encouraging me. The next installment will cover the Google map API, such as how to put pushpins on maps.

Like this:

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http://maps.google.com/staticmap?center=39.697335,-76.271451&markers=39.69892,-76.26973,reda&markers=39.70265,-76.25979,redb&markers=39.69919,-76.24811,redc&markers=39.69678,-76.25256,redd&markers=39.69353,-76.25594,rede&markers=39.687200,-76.248440,redf&markers=39.679840,-76.247140,redg&markers=39.679000,-76.258558,redh&markers=39.685674,-76.267197,redi&markers=39.686375,-76.269268,redj&markers=39.683917,-76.285639,redk&markers=39.689667,-76.280000,redl&markers=39.693444,-76.273056,redm&markers=39.685001,-76.275126,yelloww&markers=39.689889,-76.270833,yellowx&markers=39.690972,-76.265778,yellowy&maptype=hybrid&zoom=13&size=640x480&key=ABQIAAAAdMlF6s87kov8Mrl05Rw-SBT9Z7mkTKr3fvU4XECs59NmY-DJGRT-FZjJmj4Y_FgKwVAkBts9FaO1KA

6 comments:

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