Santa being tracked by Microsoft and Google

Dec 04, 2013
A young boy looks at the website (www.noradsanta.org) to check on the progress of Santa Claus on December 24, 2009 in Washington, DC.

The competition between Microsoft and Google is stretching to the North Pole as the Internet search rivals vie to be top Santa tracker this Christmas.

Google on Wednesday launched a .com/santatracker website offering reindeer games, elf antics and updates on beloved gift-giver Kris Kringle as children worldwide count down to Christmas eve.

"A team of Google engineers are working hard to track Santa's sleigh with the most advanced maps and holiday technology available," self-titled Elf Creative Director Sandy Russell said in a blog post.

Google has crafted software to involve Android-powered devices and its Chrome web browsers in on the Claus tracking action.

"Use your phone for on-the-go flight practice with the elves or cozy up near the fireplace with your tablet to follow Santa around the world as he delivers presents Christmas Eve," Russell said.

"If you have Chromecast, cast from the Santa Tracker Android app to explore the Village or track his route right from your TV."

Meanwhile, Microsoft teamed with North American Aerospace Defense (NORAD) to create a Santa Tracker powered by the organization's global radar system and technology such as Bing Maps and Windows software.

Colorado-based NORAD is a combined US and Canadian command center that works to "defend North America" by watching the skies and seas for threats.

"Since we're watching the skies anyway, it only makes sense to watch for Rudolph as well," said NORAD Tracks Santa project manager Marisa Novobilski.

NORAD's tradition of Santa tracking began in 1955, after a US retail chain's newspaper ad inviting children to telephone Mr. Claus mistakenly listed a phone number reserved for emergency US air defense situations.

A colonel on duty played along for the sake of children callers, and "it became the goodwill military outreach program it is today," Novobilski said.

This is the first time NORAD has teamed with Microsoft, which is helping power a noradsanta.org website featuring games, video and more.

"Once upon a time, children would have to take their parents' word that Santa Claus was on his way (but will only stop at their house if they go to sleep already)," US-based Microsoft said.

"Now, using a website, a mobile app, or by placing a phone call to NORAD, can determine Santa Claus's approximate global position.

Explore further: Social media sackings risk stifling journalistic expression

Related Stories

Follow Santa Claus, courtesy Google and NORAD

Dec 24, 2009

Santa Claus is coming to your town -- and NORAD is tracking him as he drops off presents around the world. The North American Aerospace Defense Command, which monitors the North American airspace, on Thursday ...

NORAD and satellite technology help Santa deliver

Dec 22, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- According to the U.S. Department of Commerce Census Bureau, the world's population is approximately 7 billion (6,979,978,073+) people. Santa Claus has had to adapt over the years to having ...

Recommended for you

ICANN chief stepping down in early 2016

May 21, 2015

The head of the group that oversees all Internet addresses will step down early next year, after a plan to end US oversight of the key nonprofit organization.

How alternative currencies could catch on and cash in

May 21, 2015

Alternatives to cash, like Bitcoin and Uber, may never replace the coins in our pockets or paper bills in our wallets, but they are creating significant social and economic impacts, and with some design adjustments, ...

Spotify introduces video, radio service

May 20, 2015

While saying that it is still a music company at heart, Spotify says it is expanding its lineup to include podcasts, news radio and video streaming.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Humpty
1 / 5 (4) Dec 04, 2013
Nazi Google and Nazi Microsoft track their Nazi cult Santa.

Let the evolution of the zionist based bullshit continue.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.