8:38 PM


Sounds like something those aviation junkies in Wisconsin make when they mix Brats with cheese, soak it in beer and fry it up on the Weber, Oshkosh style. We all know that heaven is waking up in the “North 40” on a cool late July morning, pot of coffee in one hand, and a big plate of mashups in the other.


No sorry, mashups are not something you eat with grits and gravy. But even if you’re not a computer techie, there’s a good chance you’ve heard of something called Google mashups.

A “mashup” is the end result of someone pushing technology to the breaking point, combining all sorts of data together with Google Earth’s unbelievable satellite maps program to deliver damn near anything you can think up right to your desktop.
Here are just a few mashups I found in a few minutes on the Internets today:

Gmaps flight tracker – Offers near real-time flight tracking of traffic around some of our larger cities. Laid over high resolution satellite photos from Google, it’s like looking down in the heavies from your Cessna while cruising along at 17 gazillion feet AGL.

FAA flight delay info – This masher has combined FAA real-time flight delay data with Google maps, and with color-coded pushpins, you can easily see just how backed up the carriers are again today.

Runwayfinder.com – Sweet tool for getting quick, concise airport info on anything in the FAA database. They overlay this onto actual sectional charts, a very nice touch.

World airports and airspace database – Now how many times have you woke up in the a.m. and had to plan that direct flight to Burma? With this mashup out of the U.K., you can get instant data on WORLD airports. Major information here, more than we mere mortals will ever use.

Aircraft caught in the Google lens – You have to figure that as the Googlelites circle the globe cranking out ziggabytes of digital images of Bumblef**k, Egypt, they’re bound to catch a few airplanes in flight. If you are good with Google Earth (get it here), download this KMZ file for a look at ALL the aircraft caught in flight by Google. Just click on the “Open this placemark” link near the top of the page to download.

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