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Old 04-13-05, 08:49 PM   #1
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I was playing around with Microsoft's TerraServer, available here, and was amazed at the resolution of the more recent photos. On the more recent images one can plainly see automobiles on the roads. Though I realize that the resolution of these photos is not high enough to allow one to see people standing, I wondered if it would be possible to spot cyclists, especially if a group of cyclists happened to be in an area while the photographs were being taken. I wasted some time today following some 3/22/2002 photos of local cycling routes to see if I could spot a cyclist or a suggestion of one, but to no avail.

Hence the challenge:

For those familiar with areas in the USA, see if you can spot any cyclists on the road in an aerial photo. You may have to argue that what you see is indeed a cyclist by pointing out things like automobiles crossing the center line to leave space. The first person to post convincing evidence of a cyclist on a TerraServer photo wins the admiration of the Bike Forums community and a ride with Lance, if you can find him. Post either a functioning link to a TerraServer photo or the photo itself along with your written support.

I am not familiar with similar sites covering areas outside the USA, but they certainly count, so those of you in other countries who can access aerial photos should try to find cyclists in your area.
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Old 04-13-05, 09:51 PM   #2
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Okay, I've found something:

This image is Eatherton Road near the point where it turns into Old Olive Street Road near the Missouri River in west St. Louis County, Missouri, USA.

Near the top of the image one can see three vehicles, a white and a red vehicle traveling north, and a white vehicle traveling south. In front of the white northbound vehicle is a grayish speck. I suspect that this grayish speck is a cyclist.

My evidence: The white northbound vehicle has moved to the left--its left wheels appear to be on the center line. The red northbound vehicle has also crossed the center line, and I imagine it is moving back to the right. The driver of the white southbound vehicle does not trust that the red northbound vehicle will move back in time, though, because that vehicle has moved to the far right. It appears that its right wheels are on the shoulder. It looks to me like the northbound vehicles have moved to the left to pass a cyclist and the southbound vehicle has moved to the right to make room.

If one were to follow the image to the south (the road curves some), one would see a couple other specks like this on the right side of the northbound lane. There is also a larger speck like this in the center of the southbound lane; I think this is a motorcycle.

Is this definitive proof? Probably not, but I bet someone can find a better image.
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Old 04-13-05, 10:05 PM   #3
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google maps...............!
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Old 04-13-05, 10:12 PM   #4
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nasa's WorldWind system uses some of the same data but projects it onto terrain elevation data. WorldWind requires a decent level pc to run it, though it's quite responsive on my two year old P4 2.4 with a Radeon 9700.

I use google map's address => lat/long feature and satellite view to help find addresses in worldwind (WW knows about location names on a city by city basis).

I found my brother's car parked out in front of my parents house in California - the photo must have been taken while he was on a visit - struck me as pretty amazing.

Haven't managed to find any bicycles yet, though there are some suggestive shadows around UC Berkeley...
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Old 04-13-05, 10:15 PM   #5
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nasa's WorldWind system uses some of the same data but projects it onto terrain elevation data. WorldWind requires a decent level pc to run it, though it's quite responsive on my two year old P4 2.4 with a Radeon 9700.
I checked out this site. The system requirements rule out my 7-year-old pc.
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Old 04-13-05, 10:20 PM   #6
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In this image (not TerraServer, but an aerial photo) you can see three figures to the right of the white car. The middle figure appears to be a cyclist passing two runners.

http://www.dfwmaps.com/index.asp?Ext...ional_Features

Hint: Look at popular cycling paths where you live. In Dallas, White Rock Lake will always have cyclists and runners on the roads around the lake.
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Old 04-13-05, 10:35 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by supcom
In this image (not TerraServer, but an aerial photo) you can see three figures to the right of the white car. The middle figure appears to be a cyclist passing two runners.

http://www.dfwmaps.com/index.asp?Ext...ional_Features

Hint: Look at popular cycling paths where you live. In Dallas, White Rock Lake will always have cyclists and runners on the roads around the lake.
That's an excellent image, and definitely a cyclist. You currently lead the TerraServer Challenge (I suppose we ought to say Aerial Photo Challenge).
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Old 04-14-05, 12:45 AM   #8
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Near Folsom Lake's, Beale's Point on the American River Trail...Lower left quarter...http://terraserver.microsoft.com/ima...folsom%7cca%7c
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Old 04-14-05, 06:21 AM   #9
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Near Folsom Lake's, Beale's Point on the American River Trail...Lower left quarter...http://terraserver.microsoft.com/ima...folsom%7cca%7c
Is this a dedicated bicycle path, or is it a road? I ask because I wonder whether the image shows a bicyclist or a motorcyclist.
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Old 04-14-05, 07:37 AM   #10
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... Microsoft's TerraServer, available here ...
That system has it's own URL now, terraserver-usa.com

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Old 04-14-05, 03:26 PM   #11
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It's a dedicated bicycle path.
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Old 04-14-05, 03:59 PM   #12
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Looked at the most recent shot of my house recently and was surprised to see two of our horses standing out in the front pasture.

Does that count?

But here's a shot of the Bosque Bike Path in ABQ with 2 or 3 cyclists on it.

http://terraserver-usa.com/image.asp...78&Y=77851&W=1

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Old 04-14-05, 04:00 PM   #13
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If anyone's really interested, the USGS has a pilot program of high resolution aerial photos for quite a few major cities online. The website is http://seamless.usgs.gov/. It has such cities as San Diego, DC, NYC, St. Louis, Seattle, Lincoln (don't know how that got on there), etc... The imagery is 1-foot resolution, which means THEORETICALLY you should be able to see things that are 1-foot in size. Most Terra Server imagery is likely 1-meter resolution at best. This website is a bit more complex, though, as a warning.
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Old 04-14-05, 04:24 PM   #14
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Wow... I was aware of Terraserver and Google maps, but the Central Texas and USGS server are quite interesting in their own accord... the zoom of the Centeral Texas server is quite good, and with USGS I was able to find my house based on geographic features before the streets became visible. Gives a unique incentive to check out possible bike paths based on the geography of an area.
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Old 04-14-05, 05:11 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uni_bi_cycler
... that are 1-foot in size. Most Terra Server imagery is likely 1-meter resolution at best...
The Terraserver imagery IS the USGS imagery (note the little USGS stamp at bottom of each view). At Terraserver, where ever you're at, you have three options (if available). They are Topo, Aerial, and Urban (if available). The Urban option is the higher resolution imagery (1-foot in size), color tinted (aerial is B/W), and is newer imagery than the Aerial imagery.

I'll scan the West Orange Bike trail (near Orlando, FL) and see if I can find any cyclist.

d.tipton

PS Except for the far west end of this trail, all of the path is captured in the Urban imagery.
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Old 04-14-05, 05:36 PM   #16
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...I'll scan the West Orange Bike trail (near Orlando, FL) and see if I can find any cyclist...
Darn ... Urban imagery taken 4-26-2002 (Friday). If only if could have been Saturday or Sunday, it would have been easy !!!

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Old 04-15-05, 08:38 AM   #17
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The Terraserver imagery IS the USGS imagery
Sorry, I haven't checked out TerraServer for a while. My bad.
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Old 04-16-05, 09:22 PM   #18
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I found what appears to be two cyclists on the Burke-Gilman Trail in Seattle. It is an MUT so they aren't motorcycles. They could be pedestrians but in this particular spot, between Gasworks Park and the University Bridge, they are likely to be cyclists.
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Old 04-17-05, 07:42 PM   #19
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I found what appears to be two cyclists on the Burke-Gilman Trail in Seattle. It is an MUT so they aren't motorcycles. They could be pedestrians but in this particular spot, between Gasworks Park and the University Bridge, they are likely to be cyclists.
They look like cyclists to me. I'm wondering if anyone will be able to find a group of cyclists on the road. A satellite photo of a paceline would be a find.
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Old 04-20-05, 12:28 AM   #20
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Keep upping the ante huh? That may take some lookin', but I think that should be relatively easy to find in California in May. Will take a look tomorrow.
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Old 04-20-05, 06:40 AM   #21
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Just a note on the USGS maps, i looked at the neighborhood where i grew up, those maps aren't accurate. They show roads that haven't existed in 20+years. It was great fun with the Army corps of Engineers came in, demolished three houses and physically moved two others and declared a peninsula into the Chenango River a flood danger zone, and now state land. There is no photo detail of the area though.
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Old 04-20-05, 09:27 AM   #22
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ha! 1994 is the most up-to-date images of my area. No luck. black and white was too fuzzy
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