There are a couple of mysteries about this sphere image. One mystery I know the answer to (but you don't) and one I have not figured out.
What I can't work out concerns the size and shape of this enormous round rock perched on the bank of the Riviere Bleue de Prony in southern New Caledonia. The river rapids pass right next to it and during really heavy rains the river does get moving pretty fast. But I can't imagine it was ever such a torrent as to grind this big rock into a round shape like it was a little river pebble. Or, for that matter, to roll it here from somewhere upstream. I know it is really heavy because there are lots of smaller versions around here and they look and feel like they are nearly pure iron. Iron ore is, in fact, a very important component of this part of Grande Terre. The strip miners of the 1950s to the 1960s came very close to this river and may soon return to level all this, maybe breaking up and trucking away this gorgeous rock. But meanwhile it is amazing to wonder how on earth it ever got there.
The other mystery is how do you think I took this image? Where was I? Not hovering over the rapids? This image is one of the first I have taken with my new GoPro Hero2 . This little wonder camera is tiny, weighs next to nothing, has a 170 degree fish-eye lens, and takes 11 megapixel images once every two seconds (or whatever interval I set it to). I plan to use it as I did in this image to compose the sphere photos from locations that would be otherwise impossible for me to take the image from. Have another look at this sphere image and see if you can solve the mystery of where I was when I took the photo.
新喀里多尼亚是离澳大利亚和新西兰最近的南太平洋岛屿。该岛是法国领地且官方语言是法语，尽管如此，其文化却丰富多彩，揉合了美拉尼西亚、欧洲、波利尼西亚、越南、中国、印尼等国的风情。这里有一个多山的大岛，称为大地岛 (Grande Terre)，和6个较小的岛屿——洛亚蒂三岛 (Loyalty Islands)、贝莱普群岛 (Belep) 和松树岛 (Isle of Pines)。 整个群岛人口极为稀少，有大片的荒野。这里有数百公里长的徒步小径、随处可见的露营营地、超过42个公园和保护区、清澈透明的河流和莹莹闪光的瀑布。约三分之一的人口居住在首府努美阿。镍的开采是该国最主要的工业，也是维持其高标准生活的主要经济来源。大地岛四周环绕着世界第二大珊瑚礁，此珊瑚礁形成的泻湖是世界上最大的，也是受保护的泻湖。该泻湖于2008年被列为世界遗产，面积达24000平方公里，是品种丰富的鱼类和无脊椎动物栖息之地。 对于刚上岛的游客而言，最引人注目的是这里鲜艳夺目的色彩。努美阿以其完备的酒店、度假酒店、餐馆设施和丰富多彩的活动欢迎游客的到来。