“From the detached and synoptical view of the bird, the modern paradox is graphically expressed in the constructions and traces that mark the ground. From above, the various relationships among physical dimensions, human activities, natural forces, and the cultural values can be seen to be orderly, productive and sophisticated as they are brutal and errant.” – Taking Measures Across the American Landscape by James Corner and Alex S. Maclean

Photo: Chuan Ding Photo: Chuan Ding

I find it both interesting and surprising that a person can learn so much about the geography – and even the history – of a city without ever stepping foot there in person thanks to Google Maps and Google Earth. I enjoy using Google’s aerial views to research about the configurations and layouts of a city: its major traffic thoroughfares, notable points of interest, and public parks strewn across the city that I might otherwise miss while…

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