The winner of Google’s first annual Google Programming contest was recently announced. The prize was $10,000 and a trip to Google in Mountain View, California. The mission: to develop an interface that does “something interesting” with a small subset of Google’s database. The winner, Daniel Egnor, designed an interface to include a geographic search option. Egnor, a graduate of Caltech currently working in New York, used freely available government databases (TIGER and FIPs) to convert addressing information on documents to lat/long coordinates. With the interface, users are able to restrict searches to within a radius of a given addresses, answering such questions as “where are the hotdog stands near my school?” that are not easily answered through a straightforward textual search.
USA Today has an article about the growing use of Google Earth by non-profits to increase awareness about global issues. Recently in the news was … Read more