August 20th, 2008 | Published in Google Earth
If you've been consoling yourself for not being in Beijing by jaunting around in the Google Maps 2008 Summer Games website, you'll find further comfort with this great mashup from Earthgamz. Check out the placemarks for athletes' hometowns and training cities, which also link to their official profiles and schedules of their events. Focus your browsing by country and sport with the popup menus. This is a really cool Earth API application, but if you want to get even more immersed in the athletes' world you can download their US Team KML for the full Google Earth experience. Maybe you heard that Shawn Johnson, gold medalist for balance beam, was the pride of Iowa (there's even a butter sculpture of her to prove it) -- yep, there's her placemark right in Des Moines.