Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Panoramio in Chinese, Bosnian and Croatian

Since yesterday Panoramio is available in three more languages; simplified Chinese, Bosnian and Croatian.

We want to thank very much Jing Zhou and Bin Li for the Chinese translation. We are also very grateful to Miron Matijevic and Ana Mazic from Sarajevo for the Bosnian and Croatian version. Great work guys!

We are committed to make Panoramio available in all languages of the World. There are already 20 languages and 4 more comming, but since there are many visitors from India and the Arabic speaking World we miss Arabic and Hindi. Ojalá, Inch-Allah the language of Averroes and Almanzor is available soon in Panoramio.

If you feel like translating Panoramio to your language, please, don't hesitate to contact us at questions AT before starting.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Le Mont Saint Michel

The Mount Saint Michel is a mythical and mystical place, a small rocky island in Normandy (France) just at one kilometre from the north coast.

Mount Saint Michel is an island just half of the time. In ancient times was connected to the land only via a natural sand bridge which was covered by the sea at high tide and revealed at low tide. Today is connected with the mainland by the road you can see in the satellite image. The tides around Mount Saint Michel are dangerous, shift quickly and come in at one metre per second. However nowadays you don't see very much water around the island because of some polderisation projects carried for centuries. Now there are plans to build a hydraulic dam that will help remove the accumulated silt and make Mont Saint-Michel an island again. It is expected to be completed by 2012.

The main building at the island is the Benedictine Abbey. The church of the abbey built between 11th and 16th centuriesis crowned by a statue of Saint Michael that reaches 155 metres above the sea level and makes the shadow you see over the sand in the mini-panoramio above.

Photographers love this picturesque place that makes possible great shots.

Source: Wikipedia

Friday, January 26, 2007

Laguna Verde and Volcano Licancabur

This is one of these places that looks stupefying on the satellite image. Laguna Verde (green lake), on the left at the mini-panoramio below, gets green colored everyday between 12-14:00 hours. Despite the colour of both lakes looks pretty the same in the satellite photo, the one on the right is called Laguna Blanca (white lake), for obvious reasons. The 6.200 meter high snow caped mountain South-West from Laguna Verde is Volcano Licancabur. Maybe this place seems familiar to you because it is in the cover of Lonely Planet's guide of Bolivia.

Since Laguna Verde is at 4.300 meter altitude (14,000 ft), if you arrive here directly from sea level you will probably suffer "soroche" (altitude sickness). The only way to arrive here is driving through Bolivian Altiplano in a route plenty of mineral coloured lakes (Laguna Azul, Laguna Colorada...), active vulcanoes, geysers, flamingos and llamas. Maybe the most typical journey starts in Uyuni city and goes through Salar the Uyuni, a place that deserves a full post on the future.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Buddhas around Asia

Jimmy Kang collected photos of Buddha's sculptures in South-Eastearn Asia and placed them at Panoramio's map. See the result at this mini-panoramio and his explanation below:

By Jimmy Kan in Panoramio's forum

I have been to many countries in South East Asia visiting predominantly temples and noticed that the Buddha images in each country are made differently. Each has its own unique style and blended with local taste, big ears, large forehead, beaked nose, long finger, etc. In Myanmar they put on regalia especially those temples where royalty worship. They even paint the face with make-up. In Thailand their royal Buddha image wears a crown (Wat Phrameru in Ayutthya). In China most are fat and healthy.

The Burmese went one step beyond worshipping, they made offering to particular Buddha image with spectacle, slipper, etc. and they even have one with 6 fingers. The sad part is Cambodia, not many ancient one left, except a few in the museum. The 4 face feature of Bayon Temple is not a Buddha image. It’s a hindu deity, Bhrama and many simply called it 4 face Buddha and thus mistook it as a Buddha image.

I have managed to map my Buddha photo collection in Thailand, Laos, Myanmar, Indonesia, Cambodia, China and more to come. Hope you enjoy it.

For sure we do ;) Thanks for sharing Jimmy.

Monday, January 22, 2007

500.000 photos uploaded to Panoramio

Last weekend Panoramio reached half a million photos uploaded. Approximately 400.000 of them geolocated in the place they were taken.

We are very excited watching how the community of people using Panoramio is growing at a this huge speed. The increasing flow of photos is creating every day a more useful way to explore the World.

It is a difficult task to moderate all these photos for the small team of Panoramio, but people is helping us very much through the collaborative tools. Users can flag offensive or not descriptive photos, also they can suggest new locations to misplaced photos. People is collaborating so much that even moderating flags and suggestions is becoming a day-long task itself. Anyway, we don't complain, we are very grateful to all you.

We are still dealing with issues related with the enormous amount of people using Panoramio. We made some great advances and now the site is quite fast most of the day. The exception is between 22-24 hours (GMT +1) when American an European users are surfing at the same time. As I said before, this is not a complain, this are the kind of problems you love to have.

Once more, thanks! ¡gracias!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

7 new languages available in Panoramio

Thank you very much to all translators for the effort:

Slovak: Tibor Bednár

Dutch: Raoul Grasman and Emmanuel Begerem

Danish: Søren Hellerung

Portuguese (Portugal): Pedro Melo and Alexandre Gonçalves

Lithuanian: Gediminas Vaitkevičius

Romanian: George-Alexandru Marinescu

Japanese: Atsushi Ikeda

Brazilian-Portuguese, Czech, Polish and Chinese translations are comming very soon.

More translations are very welcome, just drop me an e-mail before you start the translation at eduardo AT or read how you can translate Panoramio to your language.