Qwiki gets info from a Wikipedia page and automatically reads a text summary (synchronise with the text), adding images from different sources.
It is amazing! I can imagine students in schools pondering “instead of listening this boring professor about history of Europe, I’ll check the qwiking of it” (see below).
Well, you can compare these videos with the reports created by professional journalists of CNN or BBC and pondering how far we are from automatic generation in real-time of news reports.
Currently most videos are short (even when the corresponding pages are very long) and this totally makes sense from Qwiki perspective but I guess we are not far away from automatic generation of school lessons about geography, history or literature (and more). For example check the qwiking of the Trento, the city where I live and work.
UPDATE: This is a demo on Google Maps I put together in few hours in 2005. And this was the first time I got BoingBoinged (it was the last time too … ;) The demo was working in 2005 but now the Google Maps API changed and it does not work, so I replaced it with the flash video I recorded at that time.
It should be very easy to create real playable games on Google Maps. Here are some ideas:
– playing Risk on the real world map (with the ability to zoom in/out to combat at different scales). Extend Jrisk or JavaRisk (code available on SourceForge).
– playing FreeCiv on real world maps. Modify FreeCiv source code.
– driving a car race on streets of the real world.
– much more I guess
Let me know if you create such a game.
UPDATE: after being BoingBoinged, I created a Games on Google Maps wiki page, for collecting ideas (and implementations!). Contribute to it, if you like.