Was the architect also a quilter? Or did the owner of this French commercial building award the reroofing contract to a low bidder with a warehouse full of leftovers from previous jobs?
Was the architect also a quilter? Or did the owner of this French commercial building award the reroofing contract to a low bidder with a warehouse full of leftovers from previous jobs?

In its few years of existence, the virtual globe program Google Earth — which allows anyone with Internet access and a personal computer to zoom in on recent satellite images of almost any point on the earth's surface — has attracted millions of enthusiastic users. Among them, according to a recent Wall Street Journal article, are commercial roofers, real estate agents, landscapers, and insurance companies, who use the program to make rough estimates and scout for new business.

But Google Earth is also just plain fun to explore, as evidenced by the number of related Web sites where enthusiasts post the coordinates of favorite discoveries. Some devotees spend hours each day searching satellite images for airplanes captured in midflight. Others are captivated by crop circles or overhead views of celebrity homes. There's...

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