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Google Creates Tour de France Video Maps

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the now-now-let's-not-gush-too-much dept.

Google 78

An anonymous reader writes "In honor of the Tour de France's start today, Google has used its awesome Street View technology to compile amazing Tour de France route views. A great description of the technology that went into creating this can be found in this LinuxDevices article. At least, I'm assuming these are the cameras — Google acknowledged using Elphel cameras for book scanning and 'capturing street imagery in Google Maps.' And from the article, the cameras have come a long way from the days when crazy cat ladies and other privacy freaks scuppered Street View in San Francisco a couple of years back."

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78 comments

Really? (2, Interesting)

LEMONedIScream (1111839) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067523)

Privacy freaks. ow.

Re:Really? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24067607)

Three cheers for privacy freaks, and cat ladies if they choose to take up the same cause!

I'm not too scared that Google's driving around taking photos of public spaces, and the satellite stuff is all bought in (actually, lots of good Google stuff is bought in, but apparently that's ok unless Microsoft does it). But Google's storage of profiling data is dangerous - latest example is Viacom requesting all Google's info on who watches/uploads which videos, and that's just a private request where we do get to know who is looking for what. I avoid GMail, I clear Google cookies regularly, and I'll be the first to stop using Google entirely if I find I can't anonymise myself sufficiently.

Technology is always created by the naive geeks and then abused by the power-hungry. Now I am become death, the destroyer of worlds.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24068585)

You are become hyperbole, destroyer of good sense.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24167277)

I find it a bit amusing how she complains about privacy of Street View and asks them to remove the photo, then lets them take a photo inside her apartment for the article.

Fuck em (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24067531)

Weren't these the same assholes complaining about googlecam recently.

Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (4, Insightful)

Macthorpe (960048) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067551)

the cameras have come along way from the days when crazy cat ladies and other privacy freaks scuppered Street View in San Francisco a couple of years back."

Too right! I mean, everybody should just let Google photograph whoever they want and publish it on the web to drive hits to their website. Anybody who thinks otherwise is a privacy freak!

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (2, Funny)

thermian (1267986) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067621)

Anyone who describes cars with video camera's on top of them as 'awesome technology' can hardly be expected to understand privacy issues, can they...

Advance pro-privacy technology (1)

DrYak (748999) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069463)

Or, you know, you can counter all google's assault on privacy, using advanced privacy anti-invasion technology such as
"Curtains" (tm) (c) (r)

Remember : if google can manage to take an *occasional* picture through the windows when they do their run *once in a blue moon*, that means the *neighbours* can spy on you *every damn single day of the whole year*.

If you're so much afraid of being seen nude through your windows, put a fucking curtain before the neighbours setup a for-profit live-cam on the net and stop complaining because your cat ended up being visible on some map service !

Re:Advance pro-privacy technology (1)

jorgevillalobos (1044924) | more than 5 years ago | (#24072773)

I think part of the point is that

your neighboors != anyone with Internet access

And the other part.... (1)

DrYak (748999) | more than 5 years ago | (#24074977)

And the other part of the point is :
Google take a picture of your cat once every 3 years != You neighboors setup a live web cam on the intertube showing you in the nude

In the first situation, anyone with internet access can, as long as they have the time to loose to search for your location on the map, see your cat.
In the second situation, anyone with internet access and a credit card, can find the live-cam advertised on some shady website and see much more than your cat.

What I mean is that if google can take a picture, there way much more things that could be spied by way much more people. With the difference that google isn't trying to invade your privacy (the cat merely happens by incident), whereas some other people could very much actually try to harm you.

You close your house's door to avoid any random shmuck entering inside without your permission ?
Then you should also put a *simple damn curtain* to avoid people with bad intention trying to peek through !

Re:And the other part.... (1)

jorgevillalobos (1044924) | more than 5 years ago | (#24075129)

I see what you mean but, again, I think it's very different to have your cat shown on Google, one of the most popular Internet resources available, than to have some random site put up by your neighbor with a webcam showing you in the nude.

You can't ignore the fact that Google is THE place to look for information, and if someone wants to see how your house looks like, or if they want to try and see if there's a picture of you picking up the paper in the morning, Google is probably the first place they'll try.

Is it worse to be discredited in a local newspaper, or to appear making a ridiculous face on a national or even worldwide publication? I guess it's a matter of personal preference, but I think this is the key of what has changed. Personal privacy used to be limited to a small set of people physically close to you. Now that this has changed, we need to find a way to cope with the fact that any picture or video made locally, may be published for everyone else to see.

I personally don't have a problem with this, since I know better than to do anything private where everyone can see, but I can understand why some people feel that their privacy is being violated. It's because it wasn't like that before.

Don't think google is new. (1)

DrYak (748999) | more than 5 years ago | (#24079111)

My personnal opinion is that Google isn't new in that field.

Personal privacy used to be limited to a small set of people physically close to you.

I think that this era of privacy ended up when publishing mean appeared that enable a random guy to make something available to the whole planet instantly for free : ie. this privacy died with Internet and the Web.

Google Maps only happened to attract more public awareness around the problem.

But just like forcing Google to obscure strategic building on its "maps" and "earth" sevices won't suddenly stop interested persons finding those informations on any of the other thousand of location on the Web where it is still available (ironically : probably by using the google text search to find the locations),
in the same way, gagging the street view that google is creating won't instantly un-do all the cyber bullying that has already happened on internet to unwilling people like the starwars kid [wikipedia.org], or countless other persons [wikipedia.org] who have become sudden phenomenon, often against their own will.

Google Maps is not the only tool which could provide fast information for someone wanting to invade privacy. Facebook seems to be even more popular to quickly find embarrassing or disturbing facts about someone.

Tools that enable such privacy invasion are probably as old as the web itself. (Well not exactly... you needed first at least some search engine to be able to target a specific victim).

And have nowadays become too numerous to even hope to contain the privacy problem by just limiting one of them.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (4, Interesting)

Goaway (82658) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067645)

Are you saying there should be special rules that apply to Google and not to normal photographers?

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24067731)

As with everything, the poison is in the dose. Every other photographer who takes pictures of every corner of the city and references each picture with the exact location would be met with the same suspicion and hostility.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Goaway (82658) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067913)

So approximately how many photographs am I allowed to take of a city, then?

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24068109)

It depends. The competing rights are relatively fuzzy. BTW, the right to take pictures of everything in public view does not exist everywhere. The Eiffel tower nighttime illumination is copyrighted, for example. Even though it's there for everyone to see, the French law does not give you the right to photograph it.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068943)

It depends. The competing rights are relatively fuzzy. BTW, the right to take pictures of everything in public view does not exist everywhere. The Eiffel tower nighttime illumination is copyrighted, for example. Even though it's there for everyone to see, the French law does not give you the right to photograph it.

Actually, the copyright on the lighting prevents commercial use; photographing for private use is ok.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

pushing-robot (1037830) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068381)

Thank goodness no one seems interested in aggregating and geolocating [panoramio.com] all those random photos [geobloggers.com] and combining them [live.com] into a cohesive image. [openphotovr.org]

Yep, if we just shut down Google Street view we'll be guaranteed privacy in any public location, yes-sir.

Seriously, Google Street View is basically useless in terms of "evil government surveillance". Even if we had Star Trek technology capable of identifying any citizen in a country of 300 million from a bad photo, the chances of catching someone in some recognizably suspicious activity from a single photo taken on a random date from a public street is downright infinitesimal. We're not talking about 24/7 video cameras on every street corner here.

The only real "privacy" concern is a social one: A few people caught by Google Street View will be doing something embarrassing or indiscreet. Someone may find an embarrassing photo, post it on teh internets for the subject's friends/coworkers/family to find, and ignominy ensues. But there are lots of other places to find photos on the Internet; anyone doing something embarrassing in public view runs a risk of public humiliation, Google Street View or not.

Of course, you could try to mitigate the risk by enacting laws which criminalize showing photos of an individual without their consent. But trying to enforce such such laws would, ironically, require a complete lack of anonymity — at least for anyone with a camera — and move the nation several notches towards "police state". Sometimes the cure is worse than the disease.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Macthorpe (960048) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067919)

No, I don't. I think any person or organisation who photographs everything possible in a city and then publishes them to, say, a publically accessible website without asking the people in the photograph first should come under a similar amount of scrutiny.

Considering there are photos which point inside people's living rooms and are of people on their private property, I think Google should be asking first, not doing it and then providing a mechanism by which someone can have the photo removed after. A photo which clearly violates the privacy of a member of the public could be available for months before someone in the photo finds out.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

AndreyFilippov (550131) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068095)

It seems that Google is doing a good job blurring the faces in France - but that spoils imagery. Maybe, a person should have a right to "immortalize" herself by opting in (and proving it was actually him/her)? That probably will not work either - too few people will ether bother to opt in. Maybe - no need to prove identity? Just auction those blurred persons, so you can buy yourself a place in different nice places all over the world by just Photoshoping your photo on top of somebody's body? Save kerosene and reduce emissions?

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

menace3society (768451) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068789)

The Greeks were perfectly fine immortalizing themselves as strangely misshapen people with red skin, I don't see why we couldn't get used to requiring public-space photography published without consent of the depicted to have blurred faces.

Remember: the more information people have, the more they can screw you with it. Does your face appear on the sidelines in Stage 13? I guess your boss knows you weren't sick after all. Has a voyeur circulated nude photos of you taking a shower to his friends on the internet? Good luck getting a job with an employer who googles your address, and forget about a security clearance. Does your Facebook profile or a craiglist posting out you as a homosexual? Suddenly your prospective boss decides you don't have the qualifications he's looking for. Etc.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Goaway (82658) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068999)

No, I don't. I think any person or organisation who photographs everything possible in a city and then publishes them to, say, a publically accessible website without asking the people in the photograph first should come under a similar amount of scrutiny.

So how many photos exactly am I allowed to take of a city?

And does, say, flickr or panoramio count as an "organization"? If not, what is the essential difference?

Great idea, throw all tourists in jail (1)

DrYak (748999) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069597)

You're a German tourist. For the first time in your life you get to visit new york. You find walking around Manhattan impressive, so you happily decide to take several pictures of your girlfriend with the tall skyscraper in the background.

The your holiday finishes and you go back to the airport to go back to your country.
But at the airport customs, the police performs a warantless search of your laptop & camera and suddenly, you see yourself and your girlfriend detained for assaults on privacy.

Why ? Because on some of your pictures, some cats were visible through the un-curtained windows of the buildings.

See my point ? Google is maybe more talked about of the web. But if your window is visible from the street (=public space), it's not only google's car which can see it. There are significant quantity of passer-by each day who could violate your privacy, both intentionally or unknowingly.

If you care so much about your privacy, put a damn curtain on. Not only would you protect your self from the eeeeviiiilll google, but from the other thousands of people who walk in your street each year and who could see you waking around in your home in the nude, or who could happen to accidentally take a picture from your street just at the moment when you happen to shag your S.O.

Superbowl FunDay. (0, Troll)

Mactrope (1256892) | more than 5 years ago | (#24125223)

I know, you probably don't watch much TV or go outside but broadcasters have been showing crowds with identifiable people for commercial purposes for decades. Google's static images are less intrusive than that why would you make them jump through more hoops? There is a big difference between pictures of a public place and coopting someone's image for commercial purposes and this the case law is well established.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

menace3society (768451) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068545)

No, there need to be stronger privacy laws all around. However, Google is doing privacy advocates a service by doing it so publicly, and on such a large scale, that it may raise enough awareness to change minds.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Goaway (82658) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068981)

So you don't think photographers should be allowed to take any pictures they want in public spaces?

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

jlarocco (851450) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069793)

But that's not the issue. They're taking pictures of private people in private places.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Goaway (82658) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069889)

No, they are not. They are in public places, taking pictures of their surroundings. Anything private they happen to catch was visible in public.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

menace3society (768451) | more than 5 years ago | (#24070971)

I don't think they should be allowed to publish them without permission.

It's a bit of a slippery-slope conundrum, but my opinion remains that legal protection of privacy wrt photographs, etc ought to be a great deal stronger.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Goaway (82658) | more than 5 years ago | (#24071425)

I don't think they should be allowed to publish them without permission.

So no photos of crowds any more?

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

menace3society (768451) | more than 5 years ago | (#24073067)

If the photo is depicting something newsworthy, or everyone gives permission in advance, maybe.

According to the courts, if you're out in public you have not reasonable expectation of privacy. That may be, but I certainly think you have a reasonable expectation of not having your face plastered all over some guy's website just for walking around outside.

A person's face should be his trademark.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Goaway (82658) | more than 5 years ago | (#24074375)

So no tourist photos? No art photography with people or houses in them?

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067811)

Anybody who thinks otherwise is a privacy freak!

Exactly so. If your standard of privacy is that high, don't expose yourself to public streets.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067869)

Actually, yes. If those people are in public, or easily visible from a public place.

Or do you think Google should be subjected to anti-photography rules that many people are fighting against for other photographers?

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24068369)

photograph whoever they want

In public? You bet.

and publish it

Ah, that's different. See "model release": http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Model_release [wikipedia.org]

This requirement varies by country. A general form is you can photograph whomever you want, but you cannot publish a recognizable photo of someone without a model release, except for news coverage.

The wiki example emphasizes commercial publishing, but that doesn't always matter. For instance in my country, when I was last up-to-date with this law as a photographer in the 80s, publishing was defined as showing it to anyone other than yourself. If you threw it out and the garbage collector saw it, that was technically publishing. Money was irrelevant to the definition.

Use for news was given a blanket exception to protect freedom of the Press. This was made clear with a photograph of an accident victim that ran in news reports without trouble, but was then used by a charity in a poster campaign. The victim's family successfully sued to stop the latter use.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

aiken_d (127097) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069049)

Wow, so on the one hand we have the submitter, who characterized anyone who has privacy concerns as being a "crazy cat lady", and on the other hand we've got people like you, who seem to be freaking out about a company publishing photos taken in public (just like, as others have noted, hundreds of thousands of amateur photographers and flicker users already do).

That really sums up Slashdot, doesn't it? Everything is teh bestest thing evar unless it's teh worsets thing evar.

And these are supposedly the *smart* people. Ugh.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Macthorpe (960048) | more than 5 years ago | (#24070249)

Can you point out where I 'freaked out'?

I don't think I'm the one suffering from two-tone perception disorder here.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24075657)

People usually don't point camera's at my place. My place has no significance--historical, social, or a architectural. If someone were take a picture of a bird in my tree or a squirrel on my roof, that would cause me no concern. But google is taking a picture of MY house with my address and posting it for the world to see. This isn't public, it's personal! I seriously can see no good use from it, but I can certainly imagine nefarious ones. So, you can debate the legal wording of it all you want, but it is wrong. This not a casual photograph in a public place; it's a photograph of me and about me, and it is published to the world.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Snaller (147050) | more than 5 years ago | (#24070955)

The pictures Google takes are visible to all and if you are in them you can have the removed. The surveillance cameras are recording footage you are never allowed to see

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Macthorpe (960048) | more than 5 years ago | (#24073511)

Your point would work if surveillance camera footage was published on a website for everyone else to see as well, and the government was using it to make money.

Re:Yeah, those crazy privacy freaks! (1)

Snaller (147050) | more than 5 years ago | (#24125819)

No. You just didn't get my point: Who cares about this, the government is the problem.

Totally Illegitimate (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24067623)

I hear some of the street view drivers were known drinkers of coffee during their runs. This alone invalidates all the results of their efforts until some proper piss tests can be arranged.

Tour de France is boring (0, Flamebait)

Rik Sweeney (471717) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067763)

Let's face it, you know the Tour de France has become dull when the only interesting thing that happens is when Burghardt hits a dog [youtube.com]

Re:Tour de France is boring (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068577)

I wouldn't call it dull per se, but something is up when not a single person from a country outside Western Europe and the US has ever won the thing....

Re:Tour de France is boring (1)

chrispugh (1301243) | more than 5 years ago | (#24073655)

Yeah, really strange that only the rich parts of the world are good at a sport where a lot of money is required to compete at a high level...

Besides which, that only applies to the general classification. In the other competitions (sprints and King of the Mountains mostly), there's been a lot of winners from other parts of the world. For example, last year, Juan Mauricio Soler Hernandez, from Columbia, took the KOM. Robbie McEwan, from Australia, has won the sprint competition many times. The favourite for the overall competition this year is Cadel Evans, another Aussie.

Microsoft also created (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24067765)

A live Earth map of locations to buy doping supplies to help racers.

Le Tour! (1)

notanatheist (581086) | more than 5 years ago | (#24067921)

I literally finished configuring my MythTV box this morning for it. Now we can find out how many people were on drugs this year.

Re:Le Tour! (1)

menace3society (768451) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068651)

This is a bit off-topic, but my friends and I decided that the Tour should declare that the race is so hard that no one can win, and disqualify anyone who looks to be doing too well. They did that last year during the race (including Rasmussen, KlÃden, and Kaschechkin, who were kicked for being suspected of maybe having the opportunity to dope, during the off-season). They did it the year before, too, mostly before the start of the race, on the evidence of a list of names in some doctor's lab. Including, perhaps not surprisingly, most of the elite field of the previous year.

If I were a cyclist, I'd plan on coming in tenth or so, and end up with the crown once everyone else got kicked out for being too good.

Re:Le Tour! (1)

Hijacked Public (999535) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069073)

That would cut out a lot of the drama that keeps the Tour in the news year round. From a marketing standpoint they really need to catch a couple of big names every year in the doping net....not enough to deplete the field but a couple of well known names...a Castre or a Hincapie type guy this year would be good. Both of those guys would looke really good in a commercial, where footage of their accomplishments was played in reverse to shame them.

I like the Flandis one, where they busted an Amish guy on the day he rode away from the field in spectacular fashion, high on a drug that wouldn't have impacted his ability to ride away from the field in spectacular fashion. That entertained us all for 2 years.

Have come "a long way", not "along way" (1)

dctoastman (995251) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068235)

You are talking about distance (even if it is a metaphorical and not physical distance), not whether or not something is with you.

That's nice, the problem is the Tour itself (2, Interesting)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 5 years ago | (#24068871)

Let me explain: I am an avid cyclist. Furthermore, I like everything bicycle: I built all my bikes, and I fix and adjust mine and my friends bikes.

And I can't stand Le Tour de France or Il Giro d'Italia. I hate the doping (and everything they do to hide it) and how massively it is happening. The commercializaition of these cycling events is disturbing for sure, but I am willing to accept it as a necessary evil. After all, these events have been commercialized long before even the heroic days of Binda, Coppi and Bartali. But what's going on is just bullshitting.

I don't follow these cycling events animore. I may check some of the track cycling GP competitions (less bulshitting, and it lasts a few days instead of weeks and weeks).

Any fellow slashdotter who actually follows the tour/giro?

Re:That's nice, the problem is the Tour itself (2, Insightful)

mtdenial (769442) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069591)

I do follow pro cycling fairly seriously and always look forward to the coverage of the the Tour. If you are complaining about doping, however, you cannot really talk about the past 'heroic days' without being hypocritical. I cannot speak for the others, but the champion Coppi wasn't clean. Amphetamines and good old fashioned alcohol were heavily used back in the day.

I have as much hatred for cheaters than some, more so than most. In my high school days I was a nationally ranked athlete (not cycling) and after more than one major event was privileged enough to get to pee in a cup in front of a variable number of rapt observers. That sort of humiliation for a clean athlete leaves it's mark for the sort of people who ruin it for the rest of us.

With all that said, however, it doesn't take away from the Tour being one of the most difficult sporting events on the planet. It's a damned impressive race all around. Maybe the top contenders are doping/cheating, as there is so much money on the line for the top guys, but there (I hope, though opinons vary) are a decent percentage of racers who are clean. My only real wish is that when they do get busted, they just accept it and not try to get out of it. See David Millar [wikipedia.org] vs Tyler Hamilton [wikipedia.org].

Re:That's nice, the problem is the Tour itself (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 5 years ago | (#24072839)

I have respect for the overall idea of your post, but sadly, I have to say: bollocks to that, my friend. Le Tour and Il Giro have done more HARM to cyclism, than good. Those that I know follow these events, are just sit-at-home coach-sportsmen. I hope you are an exception. And the athletes taking part in it, with all their expenses paid including their doping and transfusions (and their regularly-replaced carbon bikes), can go eff themselves for all I care. There's more honour in my friends and me going out for a bikeride with our crappy bikes, than in the whole Giro.

It's emblematic that a nation that does NOT follow the Giro or Tour (Finland), has much more cyclists per capita than either Italy or France. I'd say hundreds of times more cyclists per capita.

Re:That's nice, the problem is the Tour itself (1)

GoofyBoy (44399) | more than 5 years ago | (#24070309)

I watch it to see what the latest in bio-technology can produce.

Re:That's nice, the problem is the Tour itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24070629)

Yeah, they should make the tour more "human" to avoid the dopping...

what if a football match would last 4 hours? everyone would dope himself...

instead of 3 weeks 7 hours a day, maybe one week or two weeks...

Let them do drugs! (2, Funny)

Snaller (147050) | more than 5 years ago | (#24070975)

Then we can bet on who has the best doctor !

Re:Let them do drugs! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24075093)

Like the Euro football championships? Where they announced in advance there would be no testing done for EPO?

Re:That's nice, the problem is the Tour itself (1)

Xophmeister (602649) | more than 5 years ago | (#24073719)

I do, yes: The GdI is harder to follow unless you watch it on the Internet; but the TdF is fairly accessible... However, I do agree with you. I've only been an avid cyclist for maybe seven years; and only serious for three-or-four, which is about the same length I've been following the grand tours. My point being that I'm not so privy to any scandals from the past; but in the short time I've been interested, the name of professional cycling seems to have been marred almost indelibly.

This is such a shame. These events are, let's face it, some of the toughest mainstream contests in the world of sport. After the 2006 Tour, we were all hoping 2007 would clean-up its act to save face... Boy, were we wrong!
Consequently, the athletes who are genuine and clean -- and deserve kudos -- get tarred with the same brush.

Re:That's nice, the problem is the Tour itself (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 5 years ago | (#24078155)

My main gripe is that these events did little to promote cycling as an everyday, and very enjoyable activity - and now they (the events) are doing exactly 0 in that respect.

Re:That's nice, the problem is the Tour itself (1)

tbuskey (135499) | more than 5 years ago | (#24089493)

This is such a shame. These events are, let's face it, some of the toughest mainstream contests in the world of sport. After the 2006 Tour, we were all hoping 2007 would clean-up its act to save face... Boy, were we wrong!

Consequently, the athletes who are genuine and clean -- and deserve kudos -- get tarred with the same brush.

I used to watch the Paris-Dakar Rally. It's also a tough contest over multiple days. If it had been around when I was in my teens, I could imagine trying to do it in my 20s. In any event, terrorist threats shut it down this year. I've heard they're trying to do it in South America next year.

Microsoft Virtual Earth (advert) (1)

ClarisseMcClellan (1286192) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069019)

In the UK the same-old, same-old let's-drive-everywhere television producers have moved on to Microsoft Virtual Earth this year. It is a slight improvement on the hand-coloured 'maps' prepared by clueless graphic artists of previous years - cartography does get involved with the M$ Virtual Earth and those 'Mountain High' maps were getting a bit old.

Unless you have mythTV I would not bother to tune in. The adverts are quite tedious, it seems like they are going for five minutes of ads every ten minutes this year, with more minutes lost after the break with a re-cap of what the story is so far.

Multi-channel television was not supposed to be like this. A decade ago the talk was that you would be able to choose your own camera angles at a football match or other event, not watch what the fat-controller chose to cut up. If ever there was a sporting event that needs to buck up it's ideas on how the television rights get flogged on, it is the Tour de France. I am glad the guys at Google are trying to bring some innovation to this event, but nobody is pushing the envelope, are they?

Jaded? Definitely. I detest how fans of this event get force fed car adverts by the same old autoholic broadcasters. I think I will go cycling instead.

Fuck Google and the ground they stand on (2, Interesting)

gelfling (6534) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069071)

I am having a Franz Kafka problem with Google. My wife (the worlds worst technophobe) lost the password to her blog. Today I discovered that the alternate email address for the account is not only an deliverable address it's an invalid domain altogether.

Google does not have a provision to fix this. The reset password either goes to the address for which I need the password, or, it goes to an undeliverable address. And every 'form' they have for every single problem on Blogger goes to the same submission form.

But here's the good part. To protect my privacy - Google's official response is to say in effect "We don't believe you, we think you're lying and so we won't and can't help you."

And there appears to be no recourse. No place to send an email no place to explain even in one sentence what this problem is.

So fuck Google and the Chinese Death Squads that use them. Fuck them all.

Re:Fuck Google and the ground they stand on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24069153)

You know, you can simply create a new blog. [blogger.com]

Re:Fuck Google and the ground they stand on (1)

gelfling (6534) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069867)

I don't want to create another blog. There's 295 long postings in the original I need to keep. Mostly I don't want to listen to untrainable technophobe family members who can't and won't deal with this.

Re:Fuck Google and the ground they stand on (1)

stefankoegl (687410) | more than 5 years ago | (#24074005)

On the other hand, if they would allow everybody to send in some explanation why they lost their passwords and can't restore it, this would allow nearly everybody with a bit creativity to overtake your account. So, isn't it you wife's fault to enter a completely invalid email-adress? You are angry about the fact that Google doesn't offer an extra service they never promised for some other free service? Seems strange to me...

Re:Fuck Google and the ground they stand on (1)

gelfling (6534) | more than 5 years ago | (#24082075)

You know, I am so totally done with listening to ninny nanners like you tell me why something that's broken is a good thing. Like I said, we kind of figured out how to reset passwords elsewhere in the world, oh I dunno, 30 years ago? Yeah so you keep scolding, that's a good plan.

Google "Displaced Anger" (1)

MasterOfGoingFaster (922862) | more than 5 years ago | (#24075771)

>> My wife (the worlds worst technophobe) lost the password to her blog.

Since you know that, I'm sure you made a paper copy of the password.

>> Today I discovered that the alternate email address for the account is not only an deliverable address it's an invalid domain altogether.

Ouch. Good thing you've got that password written down.

>> So fuck Google and the Chinese Death Squads that use them. Fuck them all.

Uhh... Seems to me you've fucked yourself.

This is unfortunate, but you've not taken the correct precautions, and now want to blame Google. I'd ask for my money back.

Oh yeah... its a free service.

So, a free service that tries to protect their users ends up pissing off someone who doesn't bother to keep a copy of their password, and have an invalid email address on file.

You might Google "displaced anger". On second thought, you might prefer using Microsoft Live Search.

Re:Fuck Google and the ground they stand on (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 5 years ago | (#24080465)

Your wife lost her password, and Google won't allow for social engineering to be used to retrieve it (closing a loophole), and you blame Google?

If it was a for-pay service, you could just call them and be identified by the credit card you used to pay for it. Since it's free, you don't have that option, but this is hardly Google's fault. Your anger is misplaced.

Re:Fuck Google and the ground they stand on (1)

Hektor_Troy (262592) | more than 5 years ago | (#24082783)

Well, if you look at this as a service offered on real world things, you'd basicly be asking your bank to send a new pincode for your credit card to

Nilly Willy
Imaginary Street -13
108 Duckburg
Langbortistan

Then when they can't really do that, you'll show up at your bank, and still be denied access to your bank account, because your passport and driver's license doesn't have the same social security number and birthday as the one you used on your bank account (say 45th of Undecember 1735, and SSN of 192QNz98217).

Granted, the bank kinda screwed up when they allowed you to use that address, birthdate and SSN, but you can't really complain that they won't just allow Joe Random to walk in from the street and use the money in the account.

As has been pointed out above - you screwed up.

Really dating myself here but... (1)

Chas (5144) | more than 5 years ago | (#24069437)

Will we see Michael Chambers breakdancing out in front of a shop with a broom?

Google the Poodle (2, Interesting)

Ken Murray (1311885) | more than 5 years ago | (#24070261)

Funny how in 2008 so many comments I see on message boards are from people now arguing against the liberties that Google are taking. They achieved it over the years by very simply portraying themselves as "Google", rather than "Google Corp/Ltd". Google is a business much like MacDonalds, Coca-cola, Microsoft, and your own local football team. It cannot be except from any privacy restrictions.

Who will win? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24074253)

Will it be won by an american who refuses to submit to doping testing this time as well, I wonder.

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