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Awesome Stuff / Tourism / Tourists / Travel Photography / Maps / Flickr / → All Tags
New York City
Cool stuff alert! You've probably seen all sort of heat maps around the world, but this collection of 126 cities color codes photos uploaded by either tourists (red) or locals (blue on photo social media sites, and plots them so you can see just exactly where to go to avoid the tourists (or join them). To be fair, the National Geographic blog re-discovered the series first, but it's just too good not to share.
Here's how the maps are created: Eric Fischer, a Flickr user, made use of all the photo data (geotags, photo dates, each photographer's photo location habits) from 6 six years of Flickr and Picasa images and plotted them on maps of placesfrom Paris to Buenos Airesto elucidate what areas of a city most attract the shutters of those who live there and those who are just visiting. Or the yellows, who could be either.
San Diego Zoo / Zoos / San Diego Travel / California Travel / Nature Travel / Foursquare / Facebook / Twitter / Flickr / Technology / Contests / Social Media / Social Media Travel / → All Tags
Our beloved San Diego Zoo has a knack for getting attention with interesting new media stunts, but this time they've really outdone themselves. In celebration of Panda Week, during which three of the Zoo's famous Giant Pandas have birthdays, they've launched a full-blown new media campaign for fans and visitors.
Starting today there are Zoo-sponsored activities and contests across Foursquare, Twitter, Facebook, and Flickr, all revolving around the birthday parties, the Zoo's panda exhibit, and pandas in general.
Passports / Lists / Pickpockets / Crime / Travel Tips / Flickr / Twitter / → All Tags
Last week, a friend of ours was pickpocketed in Israel, losing a passport as well as cards and cash. And before that, in April, another one of our friends was pickpocketed outside a bar in Rome. The thief made off with his wallet but fortunately, his passport was back at the hotel.
Aside from an incident of a missing 50 Euro after a visit to the Vatican, we've luckily managed to avoid the serious pickers, but that doesn't mean we're immune. And because nothing is so stressful as having to prove your identity, navigate a foreign city with limited funds, and possibly rebook your flights, we're going to try to save a few souls by presenting our Top 5 Passport Safety Tips.
5. Have paper copies of your passport and travel documents.
Time to prepare: 20 minutes
This is the most basic form of passport backup, something which has doubtless gone on since the invention of copying machines. Before departing, take paper copies of your passport, credit cards (front and back for customer service numbers), and itinerary information with confirmation numbers.
We recommend three copies of your passport and two of the others; leave one of each copy in a same and easily-found spot at home, leave another with your family back at home or at your office, and take the third copy of your passport along with you, but stored in another non-checked bag.
This way, should your passport or credit cards get stolen, you already have a backup passport copy for heading to the consulate and can make a single call home to get all of your credit card information.
Breaking News / China Travel / Twitter / Flickr / YouTube / Bing / → All Tags
Our Chinese visa expired last month, and after today's news we doubt we'll be renewing it any time soon. Seeking to quiet social media networks before the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre on June 4, China has blocked the population from accessing a surprising range of the internet's most popular communication tools. Currently affected by the ban are: Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, Wordpress, Blogger, Bing (which hasn't officially even launched), Hotmail and MSN's Live.com.
While there's no word yet on if this ban will continue after Thursday, what is apparent is that the country is only drawing more attention to itself at the same time as it cripples the communication channels of its modern businesses. Taking this one step further, we see serious repercussions for tourism to China because of it.
We've already tried to sell you on the virtues of Google Earth as a trip companion, but now a new study by a group of Cornell scientists promises to take the idea of web-assisted travel planning to a qualitatively higher level.
As part of developing and demonstrating new algorithms for photo analysis, the scientists downloaded over 35 million Flickr images from more than 300,000 users. They then analyzed and compiled the photos in all kinds of mindbogglingly complex ways, before finally doing a bunch of datamining to come to some high-falutin, scientific conclusions about our travel photography habits.
Photography / Museum Travel / Chicago / Flickr / → All Tags
When it comes to armchair travel, there's always The Travel Channel and those coffee table books featuring aerial views of European cities that you've probably got sitting around somewhere, but why not surf the Flickr Commons as an alternative to dusting off those books?
Just this week, Chicago's venerable Field Museum joined the Commons, adding over 480 images from their collection to the open-use, copyright-less area of Flickr. The Field Museum now joins other Commons partners like The Brooklyn Museum, The Smithsonian, National Galleries of Scotland, and Quebec's Musée McCord.
The move of some of these museum photography collections to the internet marks the development of a new sort of museum travel, whereby prospective visitors, the homebound, and those who are already fans of the collections may explore beyond visiting hours and guided tours. Even the avid photographers on Flickr are taking it upon themselves to capture a museum's content for posterity; The MoMA Project group on Flickr boasts a staggering 30,200+ photos taken within the confines of the New York City museum alone.
Flickrization is also another step to preservation of urban history in the virtual realm, as the Field Museum has added a gallery of their 1893 World's Columbian Exposition images and vintage photos of attractions like the Lincoln Park Zoo. With open and free access to these archives, staying in on a rainy day to indulge in a little armchair traveling has never seemed so enlightening.
[Transportation Pavilion image: Field Museum]
The New York Public Library has just uploaded reams of old-timey photos to Flickr, where you can now browse snaps from Ellis Island, Civil War-era pictures and even "Yosemite Views." But the 160-picture set called "Changing New York, 1935-1938" struck us as particularly relevant given current events that may soon wipe out the endless new bank branches that have popped up in Manhattan the past few years.
Among the photos of shanties on West Houston, elevated trains and horse-drawn carriages, there are also some NYC sites we recognize, like the Empire State Building (finished in 1931), the George Washington Bridge (also finished in 1931) and the palatial homes lining Gramercy Park. Financial crises or not, some things, it seems, never change.
[Photo of Herald Square: NYPL]
It's been snowing lately in New Orleans, rendering the streets slushy and spawning snowball fights from Carrollton to the Quarter. In a haunted, eerie city like NOLA, photographers hardly need weird weather to get great snaps, but the snow is certainly helping.
We dug through Flickr to pull out some of the best wintertime photos of the first snow in New Orleans since Christmas Day of 2004.
· Travel Snapshots coverage [Jaunted]
Photography / Art / Design Travel / Flickr / Contests / → All Tags
Since we last reported on the Design Cities contest at Flickr, tons of photos have been submitted that capture the essence of design in cities. Many of the images frame everyday things like door locks, lighting, signage and architectural details as hidden works of art, laying dormant until the photographer captures them. Color, shapes and lighting come together to bring out the abstract beauty spread throughout city landscapes.
So get busy documenting your city's unique design--or the stuff you notice on your travels, as the contest is accepting entries until December 1. The winning photograph will will be printed on 80,000 specially commissioned posters, and a selection of photographs will be displayed at the London's Design Museum in January 2009.
The good folks over at Flickr are hosting a photo competition that ties in with the Design Cities exhibition being held at London's Design Museum. The exhibit, for its part, "tells the story of contemporary design through cities (London, Paris, Vienna, Dessau, Los Angeles, Milan and Tokyo) at their creative height."
The contest has few restrictions; any photo that represents contemporary design in your city is OK. Whether it's architecture, furniture, interiors or mailboxes, as long as it's great design, it's game.
A selection of photographs will be displayed at the Design Museum in January 2009, and one photo will be printed on 80,000 posters that are to be distributed in creative outlets around the UK.
Showing up at an unfamiliar airport with precious little time to make it to your next gate can be a harrowing experience. At times like this, the airport's signage is your lifeline to clarity--but you don't want to waste time trying to decipher some haphazard jumble of misplaced directional arrows and hard to read text.
To show off some of the best designed airport signage in the world, Dutch design blogger Sander Baumann combed through Flickr to find the absolute best examples. From Seattle to Schiphol, Newark to Bengaluru, Baumann breaks down the science behind sign design.
It's not sexy (unless you're some text-obsessed designer), but it is darn interesting to understand the complex thought that goes into something so seemingly simple.
While this picture was made on the sly--so we don't know this guy's backstory--we like to think that he's been on a super-bender in Tokyo that's just coming to an end. To snap in your own candid shot, hang around bustling Shiodome with your camera on the ready.