The Family (Or most of them)

The Family (Or most of them)
The Family

December 16, 2007

The Glob(logging)al Village



As the map above shows -- all those red dots represent people who have visited my blog, the bigger the dot the more often they visit -- it brings me THIS CLOSE to people all across the planet.

It brings me a touch of a key away from Angel in South Africa, from Stace and Lee and Keshi in Australia, from Ziggi and Cherrypie in the UK, from Gautami in India.

And so many more in the most far-flung of places. And I'll get back to a specific point about that later.

(Except before you scroll down, note, if you can see it, the solitary little dot to the east of southern Africa, east of the island of Madagascar; keep that in your head. OK, now continue, if you're not asleep yet).

Another amazing webtool, however, is Google Earth. I have used it in the past to find my own house and fellow blogger buddy, Winnipegger and Doppelganger-finder Homo Escapeons and other places.

It's fun. It's neat.

And here it is in action.

These images didn't display as well or as large as I'd hoped, so sue me.

The first pic above is the view of Winnipeg from a satellite high above the planet. The blue parts are Lake Winnipeg on the right, Lake Manitoba on the left.

The yellow areas you see are markers for my house and HE's house.

The pic right below it is just a closer view of south Winnipeg, with those yellow markers indicating HE's general area and mine to the south of him.

Both of us, as you can see, are very close to the Red River.

Above is the Google Earth image of my apartment complex, with the little yellow marker roughly where my place is.

I sometimes throw a basketball around or kick a football around in the field to the south.

This is a closer view still, and I could go quite a bit closer...hey, can you see me waving?

Just for the fun of it, here are a few Google Earth pix of cities where I know other bloggers live. Like the Vancouver area (above, MJ and Andrea)...

Like Sydney, Australia (Keshi? Or is that Stace? Aidan? Lee?)

How about beautiful Montreal (Anna, you're down there somewhere)...

This is Melbourne above (Stace or Keshi? Lee? Oh, I give up.)

And here's Johannesburg, South Africa (I THINK that's where Angels tread)

And somewhere down there in Delhi lives Gautami Tripathy.

So OK, now back to the reach and breadth of blogging and the World Wide Web, and how being thousands of kilometres away means absolutely nothing.
In fact, it means nothing because it can mean everything. Let me explain.

There's that one lonely little red dot up there on that ClustrMap, the first pic in this post.
You probably can't even see it, but it's there. The little dot is located east of Madagascar, which is east of southern Africa.

With the help of Google Earth, I found that speck on a map. And here's where it is.

The visitor to my blog lives in one of these two small islands in the middle of the Indian Ocean, both of them founded by the French in the 1700's, maybe 700 miles east of Madagascar.

A best guess is my visitor would live in Port Louis, the capital of the tiny island country of Mauritius (to the right, above).
The population of Port Louis, according to Wikipedia, was 147,688 in 2003. A pic is below.

The other best possibility is that the visitor is from Saint-Denis, what's called a prefecture or the administrative capital of the French overseas "region" of Reunion (on the left, above).

Its population was 158,139 in 1999, according to Wikipedia.

Here's a pic:

So. What does this all mean? Probably nothing in the larger scheme of things. Many more familiar with the Web than me might say I'm just pointing out the obvious, and, well, who cares?

Well, I care. And I wonder.

It just blows me away that somewhere in Mauritius or Azerbajan or on the southernmost tip of South America or in some desert wasteland or in some shack in northern Finland, someone can find me.

And that I can do the same.

And hear what I have to say, or even leave a comment if they want, or debate with me about bad jokes or religion or politics...

...Or simply by a Google search learn how NOT to clean a fridge or a bath tub or that I've written about sex and socks or that I have a daughter and a son and three sisters and two brothers.

Little red dots, indeed. It's fascinating.