One of Google’s famous “20% time” projects, by software engineer Jason Holt and co-workers, Liquid Galaxy is an immersive Google Earth experience made by synchronizing eight flat-panel displays arranged in a large arc around the user and controlled with a commercial 6-axis joystick. The effect is nothing short of jaw-dropping. As Holt himself put it:
…all of a sudden, flying around in Google Earth really felt like flying, and exploring the ocean trenches was like piloting a submarine. When you splashed through the sea surface you cringed slightly, expecting to get wet. You could even command your own lander down to the Moon or Mars…With the Liquid Galaxy, we could fly through the Grand Canyon, leap into low-Earth orbit, and come back down to perch on the Great Pyramid of Giza without even breaking a sweat.
If I had a place to put it, I’d be building one of these right now. [via Mashable]
I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and makezine.com. My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c't – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.View more articles by Sean Michael Ragan