This week I have talked a bit about Virtual Worlds and Virtual Field Trips for school. Many students are now coming into class with computers easily powerful enough to do this with decent fidelity. What is missing is a database of the world to explore. Creating databases of the world was time consuming but now technology has evolved to allow us to map the environment.
Check out this mapping system using drones by a company called Ecosynth.
First they take a drone copter with a camera and fly it over the terrain they want to capture.
Then they convert the images to a database of information that can then be visualized and interacted with.
It’s cool technology. In fact a different company used a group of drones to map the Matterhorn. (H/T Gizmodo)
The price is plummeting and quality of these drones continues to improve. I can imagine a school buying a drone and using it to do mapping for students projects. They can then share these datasets with other schools. How long will it be before the whole world is regularly mapped?
This is cutting edge technology and the sooner schools think about teaching this, the better.