Friday, November 13, 2009

Quirk of Heaven

Ok, ever since I was a little kid, I always hoped that one thing I'd get to do when I got to heaven was to see a path on a map of everywhere on earth that I'd been. I know that's a little weird, but I was curious. Especially as it related to years on the school bus. Would I ever do a commute more than the five years to and from the same elementary school? (I think I came close with my last job and all signs point to it being a pretty good likelihood with my current job.)

I know, that's extremely weird, or the product of a young mind who didn't quite understand the point of heaven, or whatever you want to call it.

Well, Google (of course) this week released "Latitude History," an extension of a the Latitude feature. (An opt-in service that lets you plot your current location on a map and share that with someone else.) For instance, when I was in Arizona last February, I was chatting with Lori on my Blackberry from the shuttle and she was watching my location on a map on her iGoogle (still a dumb name!) page. Anyhow, a few days ago, they added a new feature that lets you track, over time, where you were. (Only capturing stuff since you turn it on, so Arizona's not on my map.)

Soon enough I imagine it will be used as an alibi to exonerate falsely accused of a crime, and not too long after that, to exonerate someone who had their friend carry their phone for them for the night as a way to create a false alibi.

Anyhow, yeah, with poor precision (it makes guesses based on which cell tower the Blackberry is connecting to), it records every ping. So mostly there's this giant loop between home and work. Makes me anxious to go somewhere else just to add some variety to the map.

That part about poor precision? Apparently all night while I sleep someone steals my Blackberry and travels back and forth about 15 blocks, sometimes in a matter of seconds. It makes the playback a little nauseating as the map keeps bouncing back and forth.

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