8 million square kilometres

The Indian Ocean is vast, and I have a new appreciation for The Life of Pi (a story about an Indian boy’s journey across the ocean in a shipwrecked dinghy) after trawling through thousands of images in a crowdsourced effort to find the missing Malaysian plane MH370.

You click on the website and are given a random map, from there, you choose your direction and go up, down and around the search area viewing satellite images of the sea.  When you find something out of the ordinary you can “tag” it – the options for labeling the tag are: oil slick, wreckage, life raft or other.  It’s pretty time consuming and so far I have tagged a few things but have found nothing relevant really.  Of course, finding nothing is just as important as finding something.

I have expanded my own knowledge of the globe, however. Mostly, there is nothing. Miles and miles of ocean without anything of note. But I also have picked out some interesting things along the way.

Things I found:

Like this, a satellite image of a huge disruption in the sea. There are waves (for want of a better word) like this everywhere across the Indian Ocean. Imagine it in front of you in a dinghy or even on a much larger ship.


While that would be bad enough – there are even bigger ones:


There’s not much use searching on a cloudy day:


Also, if you look at pictures of blue, blue, more blue with specks of white, for long enough you end up like Courtney Love – seeing things. Here’s what she posted on twitter claiming she’d found the plane.


After 2034 images today I did come across ship:

ship 2034

Thing is, for the most part, it looks like this:


Which makes the thought of what might have happened to Flight MH370 – the plane that vanished without a clue – seem so implausible, and so tragic.

If you would like join the online search-  the more eyes the better – go to crowdsourcing website http://www.tomnod.com 


3 thoughts on “8 million square kilometres

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