google earth alphabet


Thomas de Bruin put together this alphabet using places in the Netherlands as they appear in Google Earth! Actually there are two alphabets–an upper case one and a lower case one–and a set of punctuation marks as well. All in all it took him about 40 hours to complete.

There are lots of S-curves and T-intersections in the world, I guess. But one difficulty, says de Bruin, was finding the letter “K,” either big or small.

“The most difficult was finding the number ‘6,’” he says. “I almost decided to use my lower case ‘q’ for it … Then I said to myself let’s look for a ‘6’ in… Pesse. Which is the birthplace of my sister-in-law. I have no idea why I decided for that particular place, but that’s where I found a perfect ‘6’! And then I was done.” He also mentioned that he’s already found some Japanese kana characters–in the Netherlands.

Hmmmm. Inspiration works in mysterious ways


street view museum

I realize that the post I made here about Google Street View and Japanese ideas of privacy doesn’t make a lot sense now, thanks to Google deleting the most interesting photo bookmarks from its archive. Fortunately they aren’t able to touch this  “museum” of oddities and happenings caught by the Google camera car. It’s arranged into themes. This page, for example, shows couples — among them old ones stepping in or out of love hotels.

Then in the category “collapse” there’s this old house in Yoyogi-uehara in Shibuya Ward, which looks like it could fall down any minute. In fact, it did, a couple of weeks ago and made the news. The two 80-something sisters inside escaped unhurt.

Thanks to Grumpy_Old_Man_(GOM)