Google set to sell ads for Streetview. The first steps into the GeoMedia commercial renegotiation of the Virtual Map

As I described a long time ago in the GeoMedia study (hopefully soon to be published in an article) companies that have invested in Geomedia applications, such as google maps and street view will soon see and invest in the commercial potential of their administrated Virtual Space. The question is are we going to see a fight over representations of public space. Landmark monuments would offer great location for virtual ads. Think the statue of Liberty or the Eiffel tower with a big “Apple” or “Coca Cola” ad rotating over them. We are only witnessing the beginning. Things are going to get more interesting real soon when companies institutions and private citizens will realize the potential use of their virtually represented spaces.

LINK to the abstract of my article on Geomedia: here

LINK to articles on this story: here


Francesco Lapenta, 2008, “Geomedia, Mapping the World. A Brief Essay on the Changing Staus of Digital Photography. Google maps, Photosynth, Flickr, iPhoto 2009 and the Digital Merging of Collective Image Production.”,

Full Essay LINK

Remindfull of a technology that Ridley Scott created for Rick Deckard to use in his 2019 Los Angeles (Ridley Scott, Blade Runner 1982). As it happens reality has exceeded the fantasy allowing us to seamlessly move from one image into another in a virtual continuum of increasingly global spatial representations. As the map of the Empire that the cartographers continued to grow with increasing levels of detail, the virtual map of the world is acquiring a scale and scope that further exceeds their ambition. This virtual map deserves attention, because it is different both in its genetic nature and in its multiple evolution. It combines elements (Image, Text and Sound) that never before could be combined so seamlessly together. The map is built by the cooperation of two entities. On the one hand we have the (soon to be interconnected) platforms that are offered for its growth, we could say this is the equivalent of the kind of “surface” that is offered for the renditions of the map (in our case Google Earth, Google Maps, Photosynth, QuickTime VR, iPhoto 2009 etc, etc). And on the other hand we have the new generation of cartographers comprised by all the individuals  around the world that contribute with pieces of representation of the world to the enormous puzzle of the virtual map.
Read the rest of the essay here

Preferred Reference System:
Francesco Lapenta, 2008, “Geomedia, Mapping the World. A Brief Essay on the Changing Staus of Digital Photography. Google maps, Photosynth, Flickr, iPhoto 2009 and the Digital Merging of Collective Image Production.”,

GeoMedia and the Rise of Social Navigation Systems.

Finally a rough draft of the Geomedia article for you to browse. As you will see it is in a very rough form but wanted to bring it out to have feed back from you. The article discusses the new generation of location based technologies and the ways in which they will rearticulate our perception of time, commodification of space, digital merging of collaborative pictures, sound, and texts collections using WEB 2.0 tools and logics and available and developing softwares and services, PhotoSynth, Google maps, Flicker. The article also describes the social behaviors that will be favored by these new technologies (which I call Social Navigation Systems). Feed back are appreciated and needed so do write back with comments and ideas, anything suggested and used in the final article will be of course properly credited and accounted for.

geomedia-and-the-rise-of-social-navigation-systems5th (Version 5, 2008 December).  The article is set on private, please do e-mail me if you want to read the draft.

New info about the article will be periodically updated here until completion and publication.

Define: GeoMedia and WEB 3.0

(link to intro)

This is how I define GeoMedia:

GeoMedia, are electronic media that rely on precise location systems to integrate location based data with user generated contents and activities. They are not new media per se, but platforms that merge existing technologies (Electronic Media + the Internet + Geo-Location Technologies) in a new mode of data association and generation.

GeoMedia are not the sole collection of archived location based data, but an instrument that associates these existing data with a live geographical position in a personally activated and/or socially maintained data exchange (communication). Electronic Media are used to create/receive data, the Internet to transmit them, and the Geo-location technologies to position them; GeoMedia articulate these information in a live communication process.

GeoMedia are the technological platforms on which WEB 3.0 behaviours merge and expand: If WEB 1.0 can be seen as the initial move towards the simple transfer of content (Image, Sound, Text) to a new medium and digital delivery system. WEB 2.0 has seen the re-organization of such distribution of content on the basis of existing and developing social networks. In the new ecosystem interaction itself is transformed into data. WEB 3.0, based on the development of new social-networking applications, has its biggest momentum in the progressive integration of location based data in the communication process.

GeoMediaare to Space what the Watch is to Time. They regulate behaviour and coordinate interactions. They are a fundamental dimension of mediated interaction. GeoMedia regulate and generate capital, and are the predictable outcome of the expansion of capital. The move from the systematic capitalization of time (sanctioned by the Universal Time and the Standard Time) to the systematic informatization and re-capitalization of Space.

GeoMedia on the one hand reduce the distance between the Real and the Hyperreal (Baudrillard), they create yet another link between the represented (the object) and its representation (its simulation, its image), knotting them together at a certain time and location. On the other hand they increase their distance by rendering the former (the Real) a complementary but not necessary part of what we do with the latter (its representation). This processes further enhances the mimic, and the independent qualities of the simulation and contributes to the construction of the Hyperreal, a world of parallel, but different, signification systems (Image, Music, Text) in which we live parallel lives.

Preferred Reference System:

Lapenta, Francesco, 2008, “Define: GeoMedia and WEB 3.0”, Draft June 2008,

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