Friday, July 07, 2006

Le Tour: dans trois dimensions courtoisie de Google

This is just plain cool, especially if you're an increasingly dedicated cyclist with a growing penchant for Geo-stuff... (I don't know anybody like that, personally.)

Ever wondered just how evil L'Alpe d'Huez really is? Well, Le Tour de France has a stage-by-stage KML file that you can download and examine in Google Earth. (Note: Macs and Linux boxen are no longer excuses for not having Google Earth.) This is a really good showcase for just what can be done, too -- they've incorporated all sorts of information, including the elevation profiles (with intermediate sprints and categorized climbs called out) and hyperlinks to some of the spots along the route. For lazy-heads, here's a shrunken screenshot of the route up L'Alpe d'Huez:

I suspect it won't be too long before we see real-time telemetry that allows you to follow your favorite riders along the course. Heck, there are probably quite a few folks that would pay for that...