PlaceSpotting: Online Map-Spotting

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PlaceSpotting is an interesting and fun new site for Google Maps fanatics and geo-geniuses. A single-purpose sites with a basic but well thought-of idea, the site incorporates Google Maps as a tool to letting users solve a riddle. The riddle: find the specified location.

Basically, the site’s idea is to give users an image of a location famous(ish) location as spotted in Google Maps, and the user’s job is to find its exact approximate location — longitude and lattitude — using a Google Maps window. When a location is specified, PlaceSpotting indicates whether it’s the correct solution.

Users can rate riddles, search for them in many ways, and create them.  There is also an iGoogle plugin which users of the service can add. Amazingly enough, the service is off to a terrific start and has already started to collect a community with (as of writing) 400,000+ riddles opened and 46,000 solved.

Ten years ago, nobody would have though such an idea — let alone its application — would be able to get conceived yet alone created and garner such a community, but with Google’s instrumental contribution in this field in making data accessible, it’s amazing where we have got to. The application may not be useful or practical in anyway, but certainly the fact that it’s idea was able to be carried out is significant.


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