I decided to try out Google Earth today. As I'm sure a lot of people have done, I checked out all the places I have lived. I couldn't find my fraternity house from my days in college -- they don't seem to have good enough pictures of Northern, New Hampshire. The last one of my former residences that I checked was the Bronx, where I was born and lived until I was five and a half. Our apartment building at 2431 Webb Avenue stood out easily, and from there I decided to check out the navigation features to find my way to Yankee Stadium, just a few miles away. Sure enough, there it was, easily identifiable -- just follow the Harlem River for a bit to the South and West, and it's the fourth baseball diamond you encounter. So then I decided to just try typing "Yankee Stadium" into the "address or point of interest" box, and see what happens. It took me into Manhattan. The "Bronx Bombers" don't play in Manhattan! Proof of Google's mis-step is shown below.
Intrigued, I entered "Fenway Park", and it took me somewhere else in Manhattan. I then tried "Fenway Park, Boston', and it got me pretty close. Somewhere in Boston, anyhow, though not quite right at the ballpark. There must be some sort of geographic context awareness combined with a soundex-type search that looks for the nearest match close to your current location. But the problem with Yankee Stadium isn't just a fuzzy search. They've got the identification wrong. The address in the pop-up is the Bronx address, but they are showing it in Manhattan.
The next thing I tried was quitting and restarting Google Earth, and re-entering "Fenway Park". It took me to Topeka, Kansas.
Quitting, restarting, and re-entering "Yankee Stadium" took me to Lincoln, Nebraska
1. Chris Linfoot07/15/2005 04:08:34 AM
How about posting the Google Earth placemark (KMZ) file so those of us with GE installed can follow your exact moves?
2. Richard Schwartz07/15/2005 10:43:32 AM
Hmmm... that would be a thought, but I had a couple of GE crashes yesterday after posting this and reinstalled, so I might have to retrace my own steps first.
3. Danny Lawrence07/15/2005 12:52:01 PM
I wonder if Google Earth is doing some sort of Zip code related search. Note the listed zip is 10001, (which is a Manhattan Zip code) not 10451 (which is what the Yankee web site says that it is)
4. Richard Schwartz07/15/2005 01:35:04 PM
Yeah, I had a similar feeling about that. Our zip in the Bronx was 10468, so that 10001 looked suspiciously like Manhattan to me. I'm guessing they have a PO and phone presence in Manhattan.
5. Jon Johnston07/18/2005 01:16:40 PM
Hmmm...... Yankee Stadium in Lincoln, Nebraska? Where the heck is that? Has to be a kid's field or something - I've never heard of it and I've certainly spent plenty of time in Lincoln.....
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