Tagged: google maps

Want to the See Dark Side of the Moon?

Posted on August 7, 2014 by - Uncategorized

Sorry Pink Floyd fans, we’re talking about the real moon and its real “dark side.” Couple of things that need clearing up before we continue so everyone is on the same page. One, the moon rotates. Contrary to what many believe, the Earth’s gravitational pull only keeps the moon close, but does not prevent it from spinning. Much in the same way that the sun keeps the Earth in the solar system but we are still spinning at over a 1,000 miles an hour.


Two, there is no real “dark side of the moon.” Most of us only see one side because the rotations of the Earth and its restrained rock coincide. But satellites and space station images have shown all sides of the moon. Sorry, no secret colonies, no aliens (on the surface, anyway). But don’t take our word for it, the new feature on Google Maps will allow you to examine it all for yourself.

“Google Maps used its Google+ profile yesterday to announce a new out-of-this-world feature, allowing users to explore the craters on Mars and take a virtual trip to the moon,” reported Amy Gesenhues.

Humans are natural explorers, and we constantly want more. First, there was just regular Google Maps. Then they added satellite images and Google Earth. Next came street view so you felt like you were walking down the road and not just hovering over it. Now, we’re into space and it won’t be long until you can street view the bottom of the oceans’ deepest trenches.

Getting started is easy: “To find the moon and nearby planet via Google Maps, click the Earth view link in the bottom left corner of the Google Maps homepage. Once the 3D version of Earth has loaded, zoom all the way out to see options for selecting the Moon or Mars across the bottom of the page in the ‘Explore’ section. Clicking on the ‘Moon’ or ‘Mars’ links will launch images of the celestial objects, where users can zoom in to take a closer look,” reported Gesenhues.

Smarty Pins Change Geography Games

Posted on July 3, 2014 by - Uncategorized

If you’re not a Millennial, then you probably remember the classic geography game, “Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?” (For the real nostalgia diehards, here’s the theme song from the television show. #DoItRockapella) There used to be real excitement in finding foreign cities and learning about how culture cross cuts rivers, and, “ya know, like, places n’ stuff.”


Google is trying to bring back the fun of geography in a new feature called Smarty Pins. If you’ve used Google Maps before, chances are you’ve noticed the little balloon-shaped points that you can use to mark locations and destinations. Now, there is a game involved.

In honor of the biggest event on the planet, the World Cup (oh wait, the 2014 FIFA World Cup, trademark. The “nonprofit” entity FIFA almost lost a penny there.), there is a soccer-themed pin game.

To start the game to go here. Click on “start a new game,” and choose regular geography/general trivia or play World Cup mode. If you choose soccer-correlated trivia, you will then be given a certain amount of miles. Wrong answers, you lose miles. The goal is to get as many points or bonuses as you can before you run out of miles.

When the game starts the map will show a random country in the world. The question then requires you to place the pin on the correct city representing the answer.

For example, for research purposes, Thoughtwire played and nailed the first 6 answers. Here’s question seven: “French football star Thierry Henry left Barcelona to play for the Red Bulls. What U.S. city is home to the Red Bulls?” Move to the pin to New York and you got it. Google responded, “Outstanding! You dazzle us with your ability to know things not many people know!” Naturally.

Test your skills today. And sing the “Carmen” theme song to your co-workers throughout the day.