Web

Google Street View leaves land to map Australia’s Great Barrier Reef

google street view leaves land to map australias great barrier reef catlin seaview surveyIt’s been along a great many roads, inside parks and even buildings. For its latest project, however, Google Street View is leaving dry land and going underwater  to help map Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

In collaboration with the University of Queensland’s Global Change Institute and the Underwater Earth organization, the Catlin Seaview Survey aims to study the composition and health of the famous reef in unprecedented detail.

A special camera (pictured below) will travel to a depth of 100 meters, mapping the reef in an effort to learn more about how the changing climate and other environmental changes affect the reef and other similar ecosystems.

google street view leaves land to map australias great barrier reef catlin seaview survey cameraThe aim is to stitch together and upload around 50,000 360-degree panorama images to the web and make them accessible through Google Earth and Google Maps. Visitors to the websites will be able to go for a virtual dive at any of the locations visited by the expedition, and all without getting wet — unless you’re one of those people who likes to use their laptop in the bath, that is.

Leading the project is the University of Queensland’s Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg.

“The visual nature of the project will help bridge the gap between scientific knowledge and public awareness,” Professor Hoegh-Guldberg said. “The Catlin Seaview Survey comprises a series of studies which will reveal to the public one of the last frontiers on Earth: the oceans.”

Besides detailed documentation of the reef, a total of 50 sea creatures will also be photographed, including tiger sharks, green turtles and manta rays. Some of the images will be shot by Emmy award-winning cinematographer and shark researcher Richard Fitzpatrick, so we should be in for a real treat once the underwater views are uploaded.

Referring to the collaboration with Google, Hoegh-Guldberg said, “Millions of people will be able to experience the life, the science and the magic that exists under the surface of our oceans. This project is very exciting.”

The project begins in September this year.

Emerging Tech

The Great White Shark’s genome has been decoded, and it could help us end cancer

In a significant step for marine and genetic science, researchers have decoded the genome of the great white shark. The genetic code revealed a wealth of insight into what makes these creatures so successful from an evolutionary standpoint.
Emerging Tech

NASA’s space observatory will map the sky with unprecedented detail

NASA is preparing to launch a cutting-edge space observatory to create the most detailed map ever produced of the sky. Doing so will involve surveying hundreds of millions of galaxies. Here's how it plans to do it.
Emerging Tech

Probes exploring Earth’s hazardous radiation belts enter final phase of life

The Van Allen probes have been exploring the radiation belts around Earth for seven years. Now the probes are moving into the final phase of their exploration, coming closer to Earth to gather more data before burning up in the atmosphere.
Emerging Tech

NASA to launch SPHEREx mission to investigate the origins of our universe

NASA is launching an ambitious mission to map the entire sky to understand the origins of the universe. The Spectro-Photometer for the History of the Universe, Epoch of Reionization and Ices Explorer (SPHEREx) mission will launch in 2023.
Computing

Russia will ‘unplug’ from the internet as part of a cyber-defense test

Authorities across Russia are planning on unplugging the country from the global internet as part of a test of its cyber defenses. The disconnection will briefly keep all internet traffic inside the country.
Gaming

These are the coolest games you can play on your Google Chrome browser right now

Not only is Google Chrome a fantastic web browser, it's also a versatile gaming platform that you can access from just about anywhere. Here are a few of our favorite titles for the platform.
Mobile

Is the 5G spectrum harmful to our health? Experts say, 'Don't freak out'

There's plenty of consumer anxiety about radiofrequency (RF) radiation, specifically around millimeter waves (mmWave) used on 5G networks, but is it based in reality? We asked the FDA to give us its official view on the subject.
Web

Gmail adds lots of new functionality to its right-click menu

Right-click on an email in Gmail and the list of actions is pretty limited. That's about to change, though, as Google has just announced it's expanding the list of options to make its email client that little bit more useful.
Computing

Tired of paying a monthly fee for Word? The best Microsoft Office alternatives

Looking for a competent word processor that isn't Microsoft Word? Thankfully, the best alternatives to Microsoft Office offer robust features, expansive compatibility, and an all-too-familiar aesthetic. Here are our favorites.
Computing

File Transfer Protocol explained: What FTP is and what it does

FTP stands for "File Transfer Protocol," and it's used to transfer files online. Most internet users don't need it, but web developers use it constantly. Here's what FTP is, how it works, and how you can get started using it.
Computing

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.
Computing

Lose the key for your favorite software? These handy tools can find it for you

Missing product keys getting you down? We've chosen some of the best software license and product key finders in existence, so you can locate and document your precious keys on your Windows or MacOS machine.
Computing

From beautiful to downright weird, check out these great dual-monitor wallpapers

Multitasking with two monitors doesn't necessarily mean you need to split your screens with two separate wallpapers. From beautiful to downright weird, here are our top sites for finding the best dual-monitor wallpapers for you.
Social Media

Instagram test reveals direct messages may be coming to browsers

Instagram for the web has always been a minimalist affair compared to the feature-rich smartphone app, but in the last few years that's started to change. The latest news is that Instagram is considering adding direct messages.