Slightly off-topic, but those of you interested in the benefits of online maps and virtual globes to science will be interested in the lecture given this week at AGU by Michael Jones. He gave the Frontiers of Geophysics Lecture on Monday and it is available as a webcast for you to watch without the hassle of flying to San Francisco.
There was a whole session dedicated to Virtual Globes with lots of interesting demos and presentations. More info here and links to abstracts for the talks and demos here. Of course if lightbulbs turn on in your head and you would like to know if any of this can be applied to your science, please come and ask.