Our planet is changing and NASA has released an iPad app called Images of Change which gives you access to dramatic images of the changes caused by varying climates, natural disasters, and the impact of humans on our environment. The app is relatively simple in its design but the ramifications of these images present a powerful message that is important for us to notice.
“Images of Change gives users an astronaut’s or Earth explorer’s view of the changes occurring on our planet and demonstrates the important role NASA plays in contributing to the long-term understanding of Earth,” said John Grunsfeld, NASA’s associate administrator for science in Washington. “By utilizing ground-based and space-based observation systems, we are able to better understand how humans are contributing to a changing world.”
I recently watched a documentary film called Chasing Ice which placed cameras at key locations surrounding glaciers and tracked their receding edges. This is an important film that is both beautiful and disturbing but it underscores the difficulty we have in documenting and sharing critical data.
NASA has very sophisticated resources at its disposal and it is refreshing that they are using them to help us understand our past, present, and future. It’s interesting that even though there is a lot data that could be presented, it’s the visual comparison that seems to be making the biggest impact.
“The Images of Change gallery is one of the more popular parts of the Global Climate Change website,” said Amber Jenkins, editor of the website at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. “The gallery project, which began in 2009, helps people see just how our planet is changing over days, months, years and centuries. Seeing is believing, and the perspective we get from space helps us step back and see Earth as a whole.”
This app is free and worth a look. Don’t just be impressed by the images but let them affect you and change your behavior.