Geeks generally like a bit of science and space stuff in their life as well as computers and the like. That’s why when I found this site I thought it was as cool as.
There are an absolute junk yard of metal flying above us right now. Now wouldn’t it be cool if you knew there was a piece of that junk in the form of a satellite right above you? Then you could lift your butt off that chair, run outside and take a look. Two birds with one stone then, you can say that you have been outside and that you saw a satellite.
Real Time Satellite Tracking does just that. It uses the Google Maps API and Ajax to overlay a small satellite image and track with dots, it’s path. There are heaps of different objects to track. If you have no idea where to start then you can start with the most popular list:
Other lists include; Most Recent, Brightest, Geostationary, GPS Operational, Military, Amateur Radio and Weather. You can access those right from the homepage. The site also gives some very interesting information about the currently tracked satellite such as speed, longitude and latitude and more.
At the time of writing this the ISS was doing about 6km/sec (crap). Most importantly it tell you what the position in the sky is or will be. There are also predicted positions and time, so you can plan to see one as it comes into view. This is the predictions page for the ISS [Note that this is for my time zone +1000GMT]. I am refering to the ISS because when I took the screenshot that was the satellite that was over Australia, thought that was excellent. See below, small but you get the idea.
The other thing that I thought was great was the fact that there is a detailed page on every satellite. Very much a summary page, but a great launch pad to get more information.
If you are into this type of thing, then you can create an account and add whatever satellites you want to track to your account. Nice touch. There is heaps more stuff here than I have talked about and there’s also some interesting links to some more great sites. I am sure there is something that will spark your interest.
This site is “no frills” but it has the good, great fun and is bound to get you off your behind. Is there no end to what developers are going to use the Google Maps API for? I liked it and it is in my bookmarks… I really want to see that ISS, I can see some trips to the roof in the next week.
Leave a Reply