Monday, March 23, 2009

The internet can be a wonderful thing

A couple of things have hapenned recently that caused me to ponder the internet whilst I was out running 15.5 miles in preparation for my marathons in May.
Whilst sat in Caribou Coffee in Canal Park in Duluth yesterday morning. I was playing with my iPod touch as I am wont to do looking at Google Earth.
Google Earth is a wonderful tool for the railway modeller. You can zoom in on buildings and even measure their footprint so that you can estimate sizes. For either buildngs or even station areas themselves. With street view you can even look at elevations of buildings so that you could model them. Very useful.
But somewhat scary. As I typed in "Louth" in the search box. It linked to my address book in my touch. So I selected my Uncles address and lo and behold! Google Earth took me straight to his house. Street view wasn't available for this. But you can see why some people are up in arms about this. The fact that any persons residence is so easily accessible by anyone, anywhere in the world. I know that some residential areas here in the US have asked to be removed from Google Earth because of this.
The internet has also bought me in contact with old friends. People who have just googled my name and up has popped my website. Latest is Ian Johnson, keeper of this model railway blog.
It was answering Ian's announcement in Railway Modeller over 30 years ago that lead to the formation of the Mablethorpe and District Model Railway club. Club times were good times. We ran a sucessful model railway exhibition for about 5 years in the town and had a healthy membership until problems finding clubrooms lead to the clubs eventual demise.
It's always nice when I get feedback from my website and even better when an old friend turns up.

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