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Perry Cuskey

New Online Map Tool

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Hi folks,

Yesterday I came across a new online map tool that I had not seen before, and I think it beats the heck out of anything Google or Yahoo currently has. Now, I say that as someone who is actually still pretty awestruck at the fact that you can actually "visit" just about anyplace on the planet simply by pulling up a map on your computer. It wasn't that many years ago that such things were still in the realm of science fiction, or just about. Now they're so common we hardly even think about it.

In any case, some of you may have seen this already, but there is a map tool on Bing.com that already has me wondering if I'll ever use the maps on Google or Yahoo anymore, and I've always loved them. But once you've tried it, you might feel the same way.

Let me show you what I mean. Here's a screen image of the park at Shiloh using the Satellite View option on Google. It's centered around the Crossroads, and is set at the highest magnification you can use and still see the map...

 

4301234051_e748eb6267.jpg

Even though you can't see a lot of detail in it, this is actually a pretty good map. It does the job. Now, here's the same view using Yahoo's map, again using the Satellite option ...

4301234063_7feb14943e_o.jpg

As you can see, the difference with Yahoo is that you can't zoom in as close, but you get a clearer picture and a little more detail. That's why I usually prefer Yahoo's maps over Google's.

And now here's the same area as seen on the Bing map, using what they call their Bird's Eye View...

4301998722_9304af507f_o.jpg

Is that an incredible difference or what? Not only can you see more detail, you can even make out individual monuments to the point that you can identify them. You can do this for the entire park. In fact, so far as I know you can do it for the entire planet. But maybe not quite yet. I haven't checked the entire planet. :)

But as wonderful and useful as the maps on Google and Yahoo are, the Bird's Eye View on Bing gives us the ability to see the park in a way that hasn't really been possible before, unless you were flying over in a plane or helicopter. Or unless you were a bird. :)

In fact, just to give an example of how much better the detail is on the Bing Map, check out the area inside the red circle in this picture below...

4301302589_624ed9c1ca_o.jpg

Inside the circle is the monument for Schwartz's Battery. If you look closely, you can even make out the two cannons positioned on either side of it. The line of white monuments stretching off to the right shows you the position of part of McClernand's defensive line on the morning of April 6th. If you wanted to, you could identify each individual monument and the regiment it belongs to, showing you exactly who was positioned where for this part of the battle. You can also easily make out Water Oaks Pond, the Illinois state monument, the Tennessee state monument near the top of the picture, the 11th Iowa monument over in the upper-right, and more. That's some good detail!

Again, you can go around the entire park and do the same thing. In fact, thanks to the lack of foliage on the trees when these images were made, you can even make out several of the Union monuments in the woods to the east and southeast of the Peach Orchard. You could probably do the same thing on Google or Yahoo, except their maps show the park in the summer, with the trees fully leafed-out.

The point here is simply that when you're reading about or discussing the battle and/or the park, and want to refer to a map, you now have the option to virtually visit the park itself, and see the area you're reading about or discussing, with remarkable detail. All without leaving your house!

Here's the link to the map on Bing.com -

http://www.bing.com/maps/

You might want to play around with everything a little, but, on the map itself, if you move your mouse over the word "Aerial" that you'll see near the top-left side of the map, you'll have the option to chose the satellite view (the "aerial" view) or the "Birds Eye View." The Bird's Eye View is one that gives you the results above.

Also, to make the map bigger, just click on the little white arrow you'll see about two-thirds of the way down the map on the left edge. The arrow looks like a private's insignia turned on its side.

Have fun. :)

Perry

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This is great!  The only thing I worry about is if some day in the future they are taking pics for the newest addition and I'm floating around in the pool with a beer.  :shock:

Jim

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It is amazing what can be down nowadays--I think it is wonderful that they did the maps as that leaves are off asthere is so much camoflaged in the full leaf google pics.And one must be "careful" when outside now as one nebver knows if "big Brother"is watching:D

Mona

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It's not without it's flaws.  It calls the Corinth-Pittsurgh Rd Confederate Rd. and has it looping up and around north of the visitors center.  Sure is nice to stop by and visit the WI State Mem. and the Confederate Mem., my 2 favs, though.

Jim

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Guest 23RD TENN

very nice Perry, I'd not heard of it before, I pulled up our building where I work, unreal. from where we'd had an addition done a few years back I could see the color change from one half to the other on our roof.

 

23rd tenn

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