Sunday was Read a Roadmap Day which is, naturally, one of MileZero’s favorite days.
For hundreds of years, maps were works of art. Available to only the rich and powerful, they described the full sum of our understanding of the land and sea, and told stories of the fantastical creatures that lived beyond our shores.
Even as maps became more accessible, reading a roadmap still felt like reading a treasure map. As a kid, I loved to study the different types and colors of lines signaled different types of roads. Dozens of symbols each translated to some wondrous place or service. And don’t get me started on the wonder and magic of AAA’s TripTiks!
As time goes on, fewer and fewer people know how to read road maps, which is understandable given that technology puts real-time custom location information at our fingertips. But there’s still magic in maps and in the discoveries that only occur through travel.
So, for this week’s 10 Moments of Innovation Zen, and in honor of Read a Roadmap Day, here i are 10 innovations in travel that you can enjoy from your own home (which is really your only option at the moment)
Savage Beauty, the largest site-specific light artwork ever created because art need not be constrained to pencil, paint, and canvas
Slow TV in which there is no story line, no script, no drama, no climax, just 9+ hours of Norwegian landscape as viewed from a train
Heritage on the Edge by Google showing how World Heritage Sites are affected by global climate change
Animal Cams so you can virtually visit the pandas at the Smithsonian National Zoo or the penguins, fish, seals, and other inhabitants of the New England Aquarium
Virtual Walking Tours of NYC, South Korea, Japan, the Philippines, LA, San Diego, and a few US college campuses
Virtual Museum Tours of the Louvre, Madrid’s Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza, and The Vatican Museum
Virtual Concerts performed by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra or the Berlin Philharmonic
Virtual Operas from all over the world, including the Royal Swedish Opera’s Madama Butterfly and the Polish National Opera’s Tosca
Google Earth lets you visit anywhere on, well, earth and, with this link, you can visit any of the US National Parks
Listicles of the best of anything, including the world’s most beautiful libraries (sorry, I just love books too much)