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The Longitude Problem

The Longitude Problem | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Seth Dixon's insight:

Today we take it for granted that through GPS technology we can instantaneously determine our latitude and longitude.  This video documents how for centuries it was fairly easy to determine latitude at sea by measuring the height of the sun in the sky, but longitude (determined by the difference in time between local noon and the noon of a fixed point) could only be estimated.  The British Empire saw solving the "longitude problem" as the key to solidifying their economic dominance at sea and they established the Board of Longitude in this 18th century "race to the moon." Today the University of Cambridge has digitized the Board of Longitude's archives with a series of five shorter video clips.  


Tagsmapping, GPS, historical, cartography, geospatial, location.

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Romain ARMAND's comment, August 21, 2013 5:17 AM
Thank you for the video and fo the link to the Board of Longitude! Already know this story, but still amazing and well documented.
Richard Miles's curator insight, September 5, 2013 7:30 PM

Great video on how the problem of longitude was solved.

Luke Walker's curator insight, October 3, 2014 3:57 AM

What was mapping and navigation like before the era of GPS?

Check out this great archive and collection of video clips! 

Geography Education
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Curated by Seth Dixon