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Google Maps to settle Afghanistan/Pakistan border dispute – Oh, really?

Last week this article appeared on The Guardian website suggesting that Google Maps were going to help settle the dispute between Afghanistan and Pakistan over their shared border. Pakistan and Afghanistan plan to use Google Maps to help settle a border dispute that led to deadly clashes last week, officials from both sides have said. “Oh really?” I thought. Maybe the key word here is ‘help’ – maps and GPS might be a tool to […]


When politics meets maps – the movie   Recently updated !

Last year, I wrote about some of the challenges of mapping political border disputes and mused on how things have changed with the advent of digital mapping. I have been busy doing some further research on the topic which included a couple of hours with Tom Harper at the British Library and presented on the topic at last week’s FOSS4G in Bonn. Spoiler warning: If you are attending the British Cartographic Society conference on 7th […]


When politics meet maps there is no right 1

Old atlases are fun Old school atlases are fascinating, they reflect the ways we learned geography and how we were taught political geography. They are probably the reason that I hated geography at school and dropped it at the first opportunity only to rediscover a love for the digital version much later in life. When I was a kid a lot of the world was coloured pink, for my non Brit readers this was the colour […]


Google vs Siri, search vs access

I’ve been trying out Siri a bit more recently, she (or he) is a strange being, sometimes the results are just what you want and others leaving you scratching your head mumbling “what the ****?”. The other day I wanted to call a restaurant called La Rugoletta (a nice little Italian place in East Finchley, worth a try) so I tried asking Siri to “call La Rugoletta”, the results were hysterical including Rude Goal Letter, Lauren […]


Wrong, wrong, wrong or the Purcell Street Problem (cont) 1

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the Purcell Street Problem and why I disagreed with Charles Arthur’s assessment in his article “Apple maps: how Google lost when everyone thought it had won“. Charles weighed in with a couple of comments and then we let it drop although I still thought that there was something that didn’t feel right about the usage stats. A couple of days ago Charles published another article “How Apple […]


The Purcell Street problem – maybe Google haven’t lost (yet) 3

It’s odd how things come together sometimes. This morning I was reading Charles Arthur’s article on the Guardian “Apple maps: how Google lost when everyone thought it had won“. The article is based upon a ComScore report which suggests that usage of the standalone Google Maps app on US iPhones has fallen off sharply as users switch to using the default Apple Maps app which is now the default within iOS 6 and 7. The article […]