Google Earth

I tried Google Earth beta last night, with mixed results. The level of resolution detail and information seems to vary massively based on country: I was able to get a detailed view of my apartment building, the seminary, my parents’ house, my step-granny’s apartment, the house where I grew up (with such detail that I could pick out which trees I had climbed as a kid!), and my elementary school (although my middle school was mislabeled, grr!), but when I tried to search overseas, I ran into minor problems like, oh, the fact that only London and Glasgow are visible for the British Isles, so I couldn’t get a view of Edinburgh no matter how I tried to coax the program. Similarly, the resolution for Israel is terrible, and aside from one marker for “Yerushalayim,” there are no cities labelled, and certainly no streets. The resolution was so bad I couldn’t even wing it by finding the Old City and guesstimating from there. I’m wondering if that’s a terrorist thing or just a question of which countries are participating in the beta by offering satellite footage and map overlays. But it’s amazing how the “green line” shows up when you’re looking at satellite footage: Israel wasn’t labeled, I just double-clicked the green patch on the edge of a wide swatch of desert, and Bob’s your uncle. Very cool. But it would have been nice to thumbtack the Ephrata school or Dostrovsky street, or at least scope out the Tayelet. Maybe when it gets beyond the beta stage.

On a totally unrelated matter, I know if you’re on a moving transport like a cart, subway, or train, you should stop and get out to pray. But is there a ruling on what to do if you do not have time to stop, and it’s a choice between praying in motion or not praying at all?


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