10 Nov 2007

Facebook censored! What a shame!

It's been a real buzz among the Mauritian Facebook community: yesterday Facebook was put offline in Mauritius just because the Prime Minister Navin Ramgoolam wanted to remove a humorist parody of a profile bearing his name! Le Mauricien reported the news yesterday's morning. Eddy's blog entry, Pascal's blog entry and Avinash's blog entry have serious thoughts about this stupid act.

I join the cause since this is an insult to free speech, especially since Mauritius is a democratic country.

And second, what about the other humorist parodies of Paul Beranger, our President Sir Aneerood Jugnauth and the very funny minister Gawressoo? Shall they also express their concerns and shut Facebook for a while in Mauritius, while 'their' profiles are being cleaned, as expressed by Pascal?

After going against the press, the Government is now going after the online community. Are we going to see another Great Firewall of China in Mauritius, as expressed by Eddy?

The picture shows what I get when I search for 'Navin Ramgoolam' today. Of course, there are other profiles and groups that have been created in the same spirit, which I have not shown. Is it only us in Mauritius who don't have access to Navin's profile? Or has Facebook genuinely removed them? I'd love to know if we're being fooled and if there's a special Facebook page for Navin for Mauritian users generated by local ISPs...

1 Nov 2007

Wikimapia describing the whole world

Last week I wanted to see what's there around me and how the things around me look like. You may not agree with me over what I did, but I think that it's a nice way to get what I wanted.

In fact, I went discovering some magnificent satellite pictures of the earth! The following sites proved to be very attractive:

But you'll agree that there aren't that so many things for a small island like Mauritius. Perhaps some user-generated content could bring some more excitement about the maps. So welcome to Web 2.0 maps: Wikimapia.

Wikimapia is based on Google Maps. But here, registered users may say "here is my home", "this is a garden", "that's a football pitch", etc. by defining areas, tagging them, and describing the places in their own words!

For the more enthusiastic, for whom 2D is not so exciting, 3D satellite images come handy. Google Earth is certainly well known. NASA World Wind is another service that's as enjoyable.

Happy discovering :)