Welcome to iHCPL: The Next Generation. This site was created as the next step in Harris County Public Library's iHCPL Learning 2.0 Program; a discovery learning program designed to encourage staff to explore new technologies. The original iHCPL program was adapted from The Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County's Learning 2.0 Program.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Maps #32: Current Events

The internet has redefined current events. Clipping articles out of an area newspaper is not as immediate as finding out where an airplane went off the radar ten minutes ago. Explore a brief sample of current event sites and look at the world in a new and exciting medium. From earth to space, internet mapping is interactive and fairly up to date.

100 Google Maps Mashups
Marylaine Block, the "Librarian Without Walls" (http://marylaine.com/neatnew.html) listed this "neat, new" site for Google Map mashups. According to her, "I believe that the future of reference service lies not in finding information, but in helping people understand it through visualization. These Google Maps mashups demonstrate things like finding wi-fi hotspots, a public toilet, world hostels, webcams, etc., and tracking packages or US or Canadian flights in real time."

Global Incident Map
Are you a news junky who likes to track the latest airline crash, chemical attack, or sniper incident? On this site, you can check the map for the 30 most recent events, or scroll down and search by type or place of incident. You can find a map of locations, plus details of what happened.

National Atlas
Or are you the scientific type? These dynamic maps are innovative illustrations of geographic phenomena, combining the science of mapping with today's multimedia to offer maps that are useful, understandable, and that stimulate interactivity. Look for American volcanoes, growth of vegetation over the course of the year, or maps illustrating geologic timetables.

Terra Server
Maybe you are a curiosity seeker. Then you will like this site that has stored aerial photos and satellite images of celebrity homes, historic sites, the Seven Wonders of the World, and more.


  1. Look through the list of "100 Things To Do With Google Maps".
  2. In your blog, note a hypothetical question that you could best answer through visualization, and list the site you would use to answer it. (Example: Question -- "I need a career change! Got any ideas?" Answer -- Go to http://jobmaps.us and type in "Bartender" and "Las Vegas.")


  1. Explore Global Incident Map, Terra Server, or National Atlas.
  2. Find a map or image that interests you.
  3. Post it or a link to it in your blog and write about something you learned.


EarthNow Landsat Image Viewer
"Slip the surly bonds of earth" using the EarthNow Landsat Image Viewer. Ride aboard a satellite traveling over portions of the U.S. to experience a birdseye view of our country.

This post was brought to you by members of the Barbara Bush Branch iHCPL Team: Shawn Howes, Brenda Williams, and Nancy Agafitei.

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