Do you have one of those friends? The one who, every time they come over, scoops up your cat and spends the whole evening cuddling their furry little hostage, talking about how they “just want to take her home”? It’s a funny joke! You all laugh! Everyone is normal, and no one is a cat kidnapper, and now it it is time to put Ser Pounce down, please. Please. Just… put her down.
Well, you may want to direct that person to new feline cyberstalking resource “I Know Where Your Cat Lives,” a map that shows the physical whereabouts of more than a million cats around the world, put together by Florida State University art professor Owen Mundy.
Mundy gathered the photos by searching for images tagged “cat” on popular photo hosting sites like Flickr, and then pulled metadata from each picture that gave him the longitude and latitude they were taken at to build a global kitty map (it also produces a number of false hits of drawings of cats, or reposts of cat meme photos). Of course, you could do the same thing with pictures tagged “new car,” or “husband,” or “kids” just as easily. Which is essentially the point Mundy is trying to make, by exposing just how much data Internet users willingly give up when they upload pictures of themselves and their loved ones to publicly accessible sites.
But also: It’s a map of cats! And there’s a button you can push that takes you to a random cat, somewhere in the world! It’s the most adorable invasion of privacy ever.
Mundy is also running a Kickstarter to pay for a year of hosting for the site, which you’ll probably want to point the suspected cat kidnappers in your life toward. If only because sending them out on the road, laptop at their side and trusty “I Know Where Your Cat Lives” drink coozie keeping their beverages cold, will keep them away from your own furry companions. [via Motherboard]