Use your phone to find food trucks with TruxMap Lite

Android users in Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, New York City, or Washington DC can find food trucks with the app TruxMap Lite, from Los Angeles developer Frank Pardo. (This free app is also available for iOS.) Pardo aggregates tweets about current and future food truck appearances and puts them on a map. The information is also available on the TruxMap website: This large map carries more information than the apps do. It covers 38 cities in the United States and Canada.

http://www.foodtrucksmap.comTruxMap Lite


Learn about changes in voting laws that will affect the November elections

Map of voting law changes in the U.S.The Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University of Law keeps us abreast of rapidly changing voting laws. In the last two years, “17 states have passed restrictive voting laws that have the potential to impact the 2012 election,” they point out. “These states account for 218 electoral votes, or nearly 80 percent of the total needed to win the presidency.”

2012 Summary of Voting Law Changes

Travel the Globe from Your Chair with 360Cities

360CitiesCzech photographer Jeffrey Martin and his partners host this collection of “panos” or 360-degree panorama shots taken all around the world and even under the sea. To virtually travel the globe, just do a keyword search for your favorite destination or just browse locations on the world map.

To orient viewers, all panos are pinned to a location in Google Maps. This is helpful because some panos are disconcertingly fish-eyed, causing vertigo as you swivel in the photo by swiping your mouse across it.

360Cities not only showcases and indexes panos, it offers tutorials about how to make your own. It invites photographers to contribute their work. 360Cities is now integrated into Google Earth in the gallery layer. All the panos are interesting; many are stunningly beautiful.


Jump Back and Forth in Time with WhatWasThere

What Was ThereEnlighten Ventures, an Ann Arbor marketing firm, invites users to upload their scanned historic photos. The company then matches these contributed snaps to the current street view in Google maps. The photos are placed on a map and superimposed over photos of the buildings that exist today in the same location.

Search WhatWasThere to find the photos and then use the screen fader to change the transparency of the overlaid historic image. The effect is like moving backward and forward in time. Download the free iPhone app to have an “augmented reality” experience of the history that surrounds you as you travel. Join the site for free to upload your own historical photos.

What Was There

Map the Past with Historypin

HistorypinLondon’s “We Are What We Do” is a non-profit that aims to enable the public to help with environmental and social issues. In 2010, it partnered with Google to create Historypin, a database of user-supplied historical photos and information which they collect and superimpose over Google Street Views. The point is to connect people and their stories across geography and generations. Libraries, schools and historical archives are encouraged to scan and upload old photos to create virtual “tours”of the past and collections of memories. Historypin plans to add the ability to play sound and videos soon.

Sign in to Historypin with your Google password. Historypin is also available as a free Android app.


Free iPad app offers U.S. airport info for pilots and passengers

AOPA AirportsThe Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) has a great website for pilots (and passengers, too) that describes conditions at airports around the country and, more importantly, where to get good eats around every landing facility ( Their free iPad app offers the same information, showing runway configurations and giving details about fuel availability, aircraft parking fees, and the operating hours of the tower.

Search Criminal Check to ID registered sex offenders in your area

Criminal CheckEnter your zip code on this commercial site and then choose the “Map Zip Code” button to see the location of the registered sex offenders in your area. Click on the individual entries to get perp pictures, addresses, and all the gory details.