A near real time map of sea ice concentrations and snow extent in both hemispheres is available any time you need it from the NSIDC. The webpage is called The Cryosphere at a Glance, useful for such folks as weather experts, cold zone businesses, and transportation industries. It is also a resource for learning that was simply not possible before the digital era, and it essentially makes glancing at a the cryosphere in a printed textbook seem as old as the age of the mammoths.
A Wall Street Journal article today explores the iskoot now being tried out as a device that is mostly a basic cellphone to carry around without the alleged bother of the internet dependent BlackBerry and iPhone features. You for sure cannot glance at the cryosphere on an iskoot.
Does the iskoot reach mainly folks who don’t want to be without a phone, but have not yet found something in their own lives from the internet that they cannot bear to do without? My guess is yes. As another couple of billion people acquire mobile devices in the next 4-5 years, they are going to want to be able glance at will at weather, markets, news — and in cold seasons, the cryosphere.