Microsoft's Earth deletes Apple HQ

Vacant lot

Not one but two Register readers emailed us to tell us that MSN's Virtual Earth is promoting a world free of the menace of Apple Computers.

If you've got time on your hands - stand up Jens and Stefan - have a look at Apple's Cupertino headquarters from Google and MSN's rival map sites. Both sites offer aerial photos alongside maps. MSN's version is here and Google's is here.

See the difference? Google shows the Apple Cupertino HQ - a lovely, shiny building probably full of iPods. MSN on the other hand shows an apparently empty field. Not as much as a black turtle-necked jumper remains of Apple's headquarters. This could be no more than an old picture taken before Cupertino was built or a glimpse of an imagined future.

How this terrible error came about is not yet clear. Nor can we be certain who else has been removed from Bill's upgraded planet.

Reg reader Michael Sage pointed out that zooming in on the UK will reveal towns like Norwich and Lowestoft long before little old London appears. Is London next to be removed? We need to know.

Even more disturbing MSN's Virtual Earth still shows the twin towers of the World Trade Center in all their pre-9/11 glory.

No comment from Microsoft HQ as yet but we'll keep you posted. ®

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