Because I am pretty new to blender I watched the tutorial Introduction to Texturing with Cycles in Blender from BlenderCookie.com.
I loaded this texture onto a sphere but then in all views the texture is just some kind of blurry with no details.
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The problem is that your texture does not have any mapping defined.
To UV unwrap a UV sphere, all you need to do is:
For more info on UV unwrapping, see this post.
There are also ways to map images without UV unwrapping, such as Blended Box Mapping:
The Mapping node is used to scale up the texture.