Update to this post May 21, 2006 5:31 PM   Subscribe

Update to this post: it looks like the application is now active. News junkies have a new fix.
posted by aberrant to MetaFilter-Related at 5:31 PM (31 comments total)

...and by "active", I mean "showing real-time news events". There's also something that looks like a built-in RSS reader as well, but it requires an account on a site I can't translate.
posted by aberrant at 5:34 PM on May 21, 2006

Shit, it doesn't even show the correct time.
posted by ryanrs at 5:57 PM on May 21, 2006

Hey, that was one of my (very few) posts! Thanks for the update, aberrant.

it is pretty stupid as a desktop app

As a screensaver, though, it'd be pretty darn neat. And as visualization eye candy, I still think it's pretty cool bananas.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:26 PM on May 21, 2006

Ryanrs: it shows correctly for me - I think it's just pulling your system time and TZ.

The bubbles could be a bit smaller, but you can always turn them off (see the settings menu).
posted by aberrant at 6:26 PM on May 21, 2006

Stav: I've been checking the site every couple of weeks, waiting for it to go live. Thank you for calling my attention to that site!

The flash mp3 player looks pretty cool, too.
posted by aberrant at 6:27 PM on May 21, 2006

Nope. It's wrong in Safari, Opera, Camino, and Firefox. But /bin/date gets it right. Check your timezone.
posted by ryanrs at 6:37 PM on May 21, 2006

Wooo, thanks for mentioning this. When I first saw it from the FPP I thought it was awesome and couldn't wait for it to go live......and had since forgotten.

Well no longer! Let the rememberification begin! Or some such.

Anyway, danke.
posted by Stunt at 6:48 PM on May 21, 2006

Ryanrs: shows the right time and tz for me - weird. 19:20:04 gmt-8.
posted by aberrant at 7:19 PM on May 21, 2006

Sigh. That implies it's about 3:30 am GMT, May 22, 2006. Which is wrong, damn it!
posted by ryanrs at 7:25 PM on May 21, 2006

Hm, time zones work for me. Plus, you can turn off the bubble effect. Looks like mappedup.com isn't active yet though.
posted by puke & cry at 7:28 PM on May 21, 2006

Ryanrs: that's the right time. It's now 7:40pm PT, which is what it's showing. What time is it on YOUR planet? :)
posted by aberrant at 7:39 PM on May 21, 2006

Alright. My first comment was just a throw-away jab at a relatively minor bug. But now two fellow mefites have utterly failed to understand the problem. Well, by God, this horological truthiness will not stand! Aberrant, puke & cry, please visit www.time.gov, click on your helpful image map, then compare the results with the clock at MappedUp. Note the timezones. Don't make me draw you a picture. Then forward your findings to mathowie, who also screws up his timezones.

On preview: On the planet of Santa Cruz, California, it's 7:47 PM GMT-7.
posted by ryanrs at 7:46 PM on May 21, 2006

ok ryanrs. time.gov says 21:53 gmt -6. the other app shows 21:53 gmt -6. Am I missing something?
posted by puke & cry at 7:53 PM on May 21, 2006

Bullshit. Post a screenshot.
posted by ryanrs at 7:57 PM on May 21, 2006

oh wait, the gov site says Coordinated Universal Time -5 hours. Is that the same as -6 gmt? That's what my windows clock and the news app says.
posted by puke & cry at 7:59 PM on May 21, 2006

posted by ryanrs at 8:00 PM on May 21, 2006

This bug is aggravating me: Linked stories always load in the same window. Cmd-clicking in Safari doesn't open a new window as it should. I wouldn't mind so much, but when I hit back, I have to wait while the bubbles cycle through the current news items again.
posted by Popular Ethics at 8:01 PM on May 21, 2006

Cool otherwise!
posted by Popular Ethics at 8:01 PM on May 21, 2006

hm that's weird. Well, this whole timezone thing is too much for me. heres a screenshot.

So, if the gov site says Coordinated Universal Time -5 hours but my computer says GMT -6 Central time zone, that's the same?
posted by puke & cry at 8:07 PM on May 21, 2006

Ah, got it (*lightbulb*) - it's a problem in that the app apparently doesn't adjust the timezone LABEL for DST here in the US (can't speak for anywhere else). This is probably because my system (and yours?) is still calling the timezone GMT-8, which it is - you don't switch timezones just because your country does weird stuff to the clocks twice a year.
posted by aberrant at 8:11 PM on May 21, 2006

It says GMT+0 here when we're on BST (British Summer Time - GMT+1).
posted by cillit bang at 8:16 PM on May 21, 2006

If you live in the Central Time Zone, then it's GMT-6 in the winter and GMT-5 in the summer, due to Daylight Saving Time. The full quote from time.gov is: "You chose the Central timezone
Coordinated Universal Time -5 hours; Daylight Saving Time". This is the correct time for the location you selected. If your computer claims otherwise, blame Microsoft.

You guys had me doubting my sanity. After your post, I first checked my cell phone, then time.gov, and finally I called popcorn. I was about to drag out the shortwave radio to check CHU in Canada, in case Bush cronies had corrupted the NIST. Glad to see that's not the case (yet).
posted by ryanrs at 8:18 PM on May 21, 2006

aberrant: you don't switch timezones just because your country does weird stuff to the clocks twice a year.

Yes I do. In the spring I switch from Pacific Standard Time (GMT-8) to Pacific Daylight Time (GMT-7). My trusty stone-age command line tools agree:

504 ~$ date
Sun May 21 20:21:03 PDT 2006
505 ~$ _

In any case, the MappedUp clock displayed a GMT-7 time and labeled it GMT-8. That's wrong in any timezone.
posted by ryanrs at 8:24 PM on May 21, 2006

And people say computer geeks never venture outside. I must have been the only one to notice it was still light out at 8pm.
posted by ryanrs at 8:26 PM on May 21, 2006

OK, I concede:

$ date; date -u
Sun May 21 20:31:07 PDT 2006
Mon May 22 03:31:07 UTC 2006

(still doesn't much matter - it'll be right in October :))
posted by aberrant at 8:30 PM on May 21, 2006

:-) I'd feel worse about this derail if MappedUp was actually useful.
posted by ryanrs at 8:42 PM on May 21, 2006


That title balloon is actually really god-damn irritating. It obscures way too much.
posted by delmoi at 12:08 AM on May 22, 2006

Also, it shows dallas as being in florida.
posted by delmoi at 12:10 AM on May 22, 2006

I got excited when I saw a news dot appear at Buenos Aires (my old stomping grounds), but when I went there, it turned out to be a notice from the Argentina Star:

Disruption to news service on this site temporary.

Ah well. Neat idea, even with the time-zone problem!
posted by languagehat at 7:51 AM on May 22, 2006

Aftenposten, Oslo, Norway: Man finds badger under bed.

posted by sveskemus at 1:15 PM on May 22, 2006

As someone who works with time zones for a living:

Ryanrs is right. You do change time zones when you change from standard time to daylight savings time. They even have different names and initials (EST (Eastern Standard Time) for New York during winter, EDT (Eastern Daylight Time) for New York during summer). The thing is, both time zones are often lumped into one grouping, called "Eastern Time", which is only kinda useful. It's a time zone bundle more than a time zone.

Also, UTC = GMT. Or, rather, GMT stopped being the world standard time back in 1972, but they never got the memo out, so people still refer to UTC as GMT. Check the Wikipedia article out if you're interested in the background and the precise difference between GMT and UTC.
posted by Bugbread at 2:51 AM on May 23, 2006

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