Fridaygram: small world, little robots, tiny feature

October 21, 2011

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By Scott Knaster, Google Code Blog Editor

Satellite images make the world seem smaller by letting us view images of buildings and neighborhoods that are thousands of miles away. The satellite views in Google Earth and Google Maps are updated periodically. Want to know when that happens? This week we added support for 43 more languages to Follow Your World, a web site that emails you when satellite images are updated for anywhere you like. Just enter a location and your email address, and you’ll be notified when a new aerial image is available.

Back on earth, engineers at UC Berkeley’s Biomimetic Millisystems Lab have an awesome job: they get to build little robot bugs. Recently, the team added wings to its 10-centimeter Dynamic Autonomous Sprawled Hexapod (DASH) robot to see how the alteration would affect mobility. The plastic wings helped DASH move faster and climb steeper hills, among other improvements.

Finally, here’s a tiny new feature: if you do a Google search for ip, you’ll see your computer’s IP address. Handy!

And also: check out today’s Google Doodle, which honors the birthday of Mary Blair, a Disney Legend known for her work on It’s a Small World and many other theme park and movie projects. (If you’re reading this after October 21st, you can see the Doodle on our archive page within a few days.)

Small explanation: Fridaygram posts are lighter than our usual stuff, meant to provide a little geeky fun at the end of the week.

Updated at 4:30 PM to say that Follow Your World added language support this week, rather than launching.