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Google Earth Explores The Ocean Deep

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Privacy issues with Google’s new Street View may be grabbing headlines, but Google Earth has gone for some truly wet and wild stuff: a hydrographic survey of the seabed surrounding Great Britain.

The new images may make navigation in the area safer, yet, according to WebWatch’s Andy McCue, “The MCA did warn . . . that the Google Earth seabed maps should not be used for actual nautical navigation purposes.”  (The MCA, by the way, is the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, a UK organization.)

That prohibition isn’t nearly as silly as it sounds, though – someone appears to have thought this through, and that someone is Rob Spillard, the MCA’s hydrography manager.  He said in a statement, “[W]e are hoping that, by publishing the data on our web site in a special layer, viewable in Google Earth, we will encourage other government and non-government organisations to share seabed data with us, thereby saving costs for everybody.”

But that’s not the only thing motivation at work here.  “[W]e are also pleased to show the public where their money is being spent and hope that, by doing this, we may also receive suggestions regarding new areas that should be considered for surveying so as to further improve safety for the mariner,” Spillard continues.

Granted, seabeds may not be as interesting to most folks as secret Chinese military bases or other people’s apartments, but, hey, at least this Google Earth layer is for a very good cause.

Google Earth Explores The Ocean Deep
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