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A Mirror of Our World: Google Earth and the History of Cartography

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Title: A Mirror of Our World: Google Earth and the History of Cartography
Author: Allen, David Y.
Abstract: Google Earth is widely admired as one of the most advanced and powerful products of modern computerized cartography. It has been praised as a revolutionary new way of viewing the earth, as the first convincing attempt at a mirror-world or a simulacrum of the earth. Nonetheless, Google Earth is deeply rooted in the practices and conventions of Western cartography. This article examines what is new and what is old in Google Earth. It especially focuses on the extent to which Google Earth constitutes a mirror world, and on the philosophical meaning and validity of such concepts as cartographic mirroring and representation. It also speculates about the possible future development of Google Earth and similar efforts to mirror the world in digital form.
Publisher: ALA Map and Geography Round Table
Subject: Google Earth
history of cartography
maps
atlases
virtual reality
mimesis
representation
mirror worlds
simulacra
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1969.1/129202
Date: 2009-08-20

Citation

Allen, David Y. (2009). A Mirror of Our World: Google Earth and the History of Cartography. ALA Map and Geography Round Table. Available electronically from http : / /hdl .handle .net /1969 .1 /129202.

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