Saturday, December 17, 2011

Japan's Earthquake and Tsunami - Visualizing Before and After

Over the past week, a number of organizations have offered reflections on the Japanese Earthquake and Tsunami of earlier this year.  Many of them have used maps and satellite photos to highlight the extent of the problems that remain.  For your consideration:

1.) Click on the link below to read an article from the New York Times.  Associated maps and satellite photos are offered as separate links:

WORLD   | December 07, 2011
Japan hopes the cleanup near the tsunami-ravaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant will allow the displaced to return home.
  • Click here, for an oblique graphic and maps of the Fukushima region.
  • Click here, for a series of comparative satellite views of the damaged areas in Japan.

2.) Proceed to Google's "Memories for the Future" site.  On it you will find a Google Maps application that provides a StreetView version of "before and after" the devastation.  Drag the gold colored "Google Man" down from above the scale slide bar on the upper left hand side of the map, and drop him onto any part of the map's blue colored areas to begin your tour. Click here.

3.) Nagasaki Archive has created a Google Earth mashup that allows users to view post event photos overlaid onto a pre-event version of Google Earth.  Go here to read about the effort and see representative examples.

Comment:  The brain works in pictures - its the reason we can see multiple different views of something like a dog (face, profile, top-down, etc.), and still recognize what we are looking at is a dog.  Its smoehting I tinhk you cmolpeetly udrnetsnad - eevn touhgh I dnot tnihk you hvae eevr ralley tohuhgt auobt it.  See what I mean?  Your brain even processes words as pictures.  Consequently, the best way to relate any story is by using - pictures.  And when that story is about a disaster, maps and aerial photos are the only way to tell a story that's about location - whether it's while the disaster is happening, or later.

1 comment: