Daily Archives: April 8, 2010

Headin on down the Virtual Highway – NZ Style

8th April 2010

If you’re already reading this, then you’ve got all the vehicle you need to head on down New Zealands latest highway.

Want to travel virtually through parts of NZ while still sitting in your comfy chair in front of your screen.

You can now do that….well actually you could of for a few months now.

While you were sleeping ZZZZZZZZ, NZ Government Dept – NZ Transport Agency has been quietly gaining some good press with its “Virtual Highway.”

It turns out –  here we are again leading the world in showcasing an applications potential.

What is it?

Well best let the agency explain.

Virtual Highway is a website that provides video images of key travel routes and maps of the New Zealand state highway network. As the video segment plays the corresponding location is shown on a moving map. The user can choose between four different types of maps to view.

Screen – NZ Transport Agency (click for full resolution image)

The above Video / map mashup is from a Nelson – Marlborough trip.

If you might think that the shadow on the video looks like it’s coming from a truck – then you’re not mistaken.

As one method of collection, each year the agencies vehicles – officially termed NZTA road (pavement) survey vehicles, travel the highways of this country to gather data about road conditions.

As an add on to this, they have embarked on this experiment called “Virtual Highway.” They are already out there doing it / collecting the data – so why not take advantage of it.

There are many parts of NZ covered as this map suggest – but I forward that’s its probably a “work in progress” with more data coming on stream as its ready.

Still for a “time-lapse” video trip through different parts of the long white cloud, this is simply great.

So just click on the above map of NZ to be taken to the site and explore to your hearts content.

Arguably Nelsons most photographed location

8th April 2010

Want to leave your own stamp on Nelson ……..well then time is running out.

Recognise this?

Closer up you most certain should…….

Chris Finlayson is the man behind one of Nelsons most recognized, if not iconic,  landmarks.

Of course I am talking about the “Aotearoa” mural on the old Crop & Field Research building down near the waterfront on Wakefield Quay.

In the last year Chris has been re-commissioned by the local Nelson City Council to re-visit the region with the main aim of refreshing his iconic 40 foot high “Aotearoa” image.

After 20-30 years of life, and rightfully so, the local council recognised that time had not done any favours to the original vibrant colours of the painting, and therefore to extend its life and its local importance, it was decided to call back the original artist and ask him to do it all over again.

Luckily for Nelson, Chris was there, available and ready for the task.

And with a great community spirit he advertised and asked for local assistance. Not surprisingly, he got it.

Why wouldn’t you as a local Nelsonian want to be part of this – forgive the cliché – but to be a part of history.

However time is running out for you to have an opportunity to leave your own stamp on his new and latest Nelson project.

Chris has been commissioned by Nelson businessman Tom Sturgess to paint the side of his multi storey building across the road from the Catherdral Steps at the top of Trafalgar St..

According to the Nelson Mail, Mr Sturgess remarked;

“I have watched Chris’s stuff for years and thought it would be neat to have something that is everybodies. I just had a blank wall, it is really Chris’s vision.”

Far from Chris’s biggest effort….after all he did paint the 256m long mural of Te Papa for its opening, he still relished this challenge.

Stating his thoughts, he told the local paper, the Nelson Mail, that;

“It is definitely the biggest in Nelson and the top of the south.”

And followed with………….

“people spend so much time decorating their houses it is time to start thinking about decorating their playground.”

Chris was, at least up until a few days ago, asking for community support and for individual volunteers to gain their place in history by helping out with his mural which he called “Urban Jungle.”

If you would like to participate give Chris a call on 027 811 611.

Alternatively you can just turn up on-site as the Nelson Mail reports – “on fine days” between 10am – 3pm importantly in “overalls” if you’d like to be involved, but as my photos today attest you’d better be quick.