Articles

Building a ‘live Google Earth’

UrtheCast ‐ Articles

Fourteen years ago, in November 1998, I stood on a low mound overlooking the bleak Kazakhstan steppe. It was early morning. The ground was covered in a light dusting of snow and a bitter wind tore across the cracked concrete, flattening the surrounding scrappy clumps of grass. A stream of garbled Russian crackled from a loudspeaker mounted on an army truck. The speech was overwhelmed by static and the angry muttering of a technician attempting a hasty repair. Neither of us looked particularly happy to be there. At least I was being paid – in Yeltsin’s Russia, the chances were he hadn’t received a salary for several weeks. Nevertheless, we were both about to witness a significant moment in space history.

Read more...

How it works: UrtheCast

UrtheCast ‐ Articles

Next year, UrtheCast (pronounced “EarthCast”) will begin to broadcast the first ever live, HD video of the Earth from space – think Google Earth meets YouTube. Here’s how it will work…

Read more...

B.C. firm zooms in on profits from space

UrtheCast ‐ Articles

A tiny B.C. startup company has a bold plan to take on Google Earth and giant satellite-imaging companies: By hitching a ride on a Russian rocket. Most images from Earth are beamed down from cameras mounted on satellites that can cost well over $100-million to build and launch. But privately held Urthecast of Vancouver says that by next year, it will be offering free, freshly captured high-definition video streaming of images of Earth over the Internet as well as medium-resolution photos from space at a cost of just $10-million to the company.

Read more...

When a Senate subcommittee held its recent hearing on the future of commercial spaceflight in the United States, there were no dissenters before the panel. Even a representative of the Government Accountability Office — whose mission it is to focus a critical eye on government operations and spending — told senators that the future of the industry is now. It [...]

Read more...

Space tourism is slowly becoming a reality but still most of us will never see earth from space, until now. SF based UrtheCAST are on schedule to put HD cameras on the International Space Station by the end of 2012 to stream live images. The camera travels 26,000 km per hour and orbits the earth 16 times a day. I met Eric Bieller the Chief Product Developer to talk about how this is different from Google Earth, how they plan to make money and how you get start a space business.

Read more...

Close to 500 people participated in a flash mob in New York City’s Hudson River Park for Social Media Day. The performance was the brainchild of tech startup Urthecast, which aims to provide the first-ever HD streaming video of the Earth from space. Surprised tourists waiting in line for Hudson River cruises were taken aback as the participants, clad in orange, ran to the boardwalk and started dancing.

Read more...

Live from the ISS

UrtheCast ‐ Articles

The original idea for UrtheCast was simple: place a couple of webcams on the International Space Station and stream the images over the internet. That was the plan before UrtheCast's Russian partner, RSC Energia, offered to install the cameras on a moveable platform attached to the space station's Zvezda service module. UrtheCast executives then decided to replace one of the still cameras with a video camera

Read more...

While Google Earth does a fantastic job at giving us Earthlings a view of our street and house from outer space, a new startup is teaming up with the International Space Station to, well, make you feel as if you're on the International Space Station. The startup will utilize HD cameras mounted on ISS to stream video in almost real time of the earth, 24/7. According to Mashable, the cameras are currently being built and will be shipped off to Russia, where the Russian Federal Space Agency will handle the deployment of the devices into space. The entire system should be up and running by early next year. This is the first time that the earth is being filmed and regular citizens can watch the video.

Read more...

To a passerby, April 21 resembled any other beautiful day in the San Francisco Bay. Or so it seemed. A smattering of clouds dotted the skies and gulls soared over the tourists' heads. People milled about, leaning against railings, chatting with friends, and watching boats glide out of the harbour. At 1:00 PM, a rumbling arose. The helicopter that was paused on the horizon flew closer and the pier became noticeably crowded. Within moments the helicopter was overhead. Passersby looked up, shadowing their eyes from the sun, and watched as almost two hundred people removed their sweaters to reveal bright orange UrtheCast T-Shirts. This is when they began, in unison, to strike some unfamiliar poses. It was clear that something very cool was happening.

Read more...