What is Google Earth?
Google Earth is a program that maps the planet Earth utilizing the superimposition of images acquired from several sources including aerial photography, satellite imagery, and GIS 3D globe.
What Does Google Earth provide?
Thanks to the satellite imagery provided by Google’s software, humans now view the Earth in a whole new way that is changing the education system as well as providing new opportunities. Imagine being able to see any spot on Earth, and from pretty close up!
Add to this the fact that 3D reconstructions of structures is provided for many areas, as is terrain, as are detailed directions to places you want to reach.
For an enriched experience you can add a multitude of layers to the maps you view providing a plethora of information about many topics of interest such as tourism locations and landmarks, or updates on real-time events (e.g., natural disasters).
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What did Google Earth used to be called?
Earth Viewer 3D. It was developed by Keyhole, which Google bought in 2004.
How is Google Earth available for use?
Currently you have two choices, each of which is provided under a different license. The most advanced is Google Earth Pro intended for commercial use at a cost of four hundred dollars per year and Google Earth Plus which is free but is limited in the functions it provides. Formerly a third choice, Google Earth Plus was available but has now been discontinued.
What computers will run Google Earth?
In 2005 Google Earth was re-released and that version runs on Mac OX X 10.3.9 and higher, as well as Windows 2000 and higher. Google Earth also runs on Linux Kernel 2.4 or later as well as on FreeBSD, which is similar to Unix.
In May of 2008 Google Earth was also offered as a browser plugin, and then in October of that year Google Earth was offered as a free iPhone app (from the app store) to run on the iPhone Operating System.
What angle does Google Earth display?
The satellite images provided by Google Earth can show an oblique angle, with perspective, or the view of a perpendicular vantage point. From these perspectives you can see whole towns or individual structures.
How good is the resolution on the Google Earth displays?
Different locations have different degrees of resolution, and this is determined in part to the importance and/or popularity of the particular location. Most locations are delivered with at least 15 meters of resolution. Other locations, such as Cambridge and Las Vegas, provide the highest resolution which is 6 inches (15 cm).
Are 3D images available on Google Earth?
Yes, although many parts of the planet are visible only as 2D imagery though viewed from an oblique angle a perspective is provided.
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In areas where 3D is available the image is provided utilizing Shuttle Radar Topography Mission data from NASA. This digital elevation model data allows three dimensional views.
What is Google Earth in the Classroom?
Helping teachers provide rich lesson plans as well as developing major geography-based themes, Google Earth in the Classroom works with other web applications such as Wikipedia to provide detailed information and imagery about various cultures, locations, human movements, and more. A major push to implement Google Earth in the Classroom has brought this new technology to many schools throughout the world.
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Are cities shown in 3D?
3D structures are shown in great detail for many major structures in various countries including the United States, Japan, the United Kingdom, Australia, CAnada, India, and Ireland. The first city to be displayed entirely in 3D was Hamburg in 2007. 3D structures such as buildings and bridges include information from submissions by users employing the 3D modeling program software called SketchUp.
What is the newest and most cutting edge mapping technology used by Google Earth?
In 2008 Google Earth added a Westport3D model of the Irish town called Westport. This model was generated by a 3D imaging firm named AM3TD which utilized digital photography combined with long-distance laser scanning technology.
The result is the first model of its type and features the best photo-realistic, ultra-high-resolution textures. Also added to Google Earth in 2008 was a fully integrated Google Street View that provides users with a view from the street level for a wide variety of sites.
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What is Google Sky?
Introduced in 2007, Google Sky provides users with views of celestial bodies including stars and is the sky-viewing mode of Google Earth.
Developed in partnership with the Space Telescope Science Institute which is the Hubble Space Telescope’s science operations center.
Other features offered through Google Sky include galaxies and constellations as well as animations showing orbits, and various data including positions of major satellites. Google also offers a web-based version.
These are just some of the features you can look forward to after a Google Earth Download.
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Street View Google Earth
Providing a better 3D effect than Google Maps, Street View in Google Earth is accessed through the Street View layer which is located on Google Earth’s lower left corner. Click on the small box to the left of it to turn Street View on. Then zoom into a place that interests you and find the gold camera icons.
When you click once (left mouse button) on a camera icon and you will see a placemark with a photograph. If you click once on that you get the Street View image and if you click twice you fly to the location.
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Photo Viewer in Google Earth
Using the Photo Viewer tool you can easily pan around on the inside of the 3D photo, and you can also look down or up, and in a 360-degree circle around you. When you zoom in very close over a street this spherical panorama effect is still available.
If you would like additional information about a particular area then turn on more layers such as Lodging, Dining, or Roads, as well as the Geographic Web layer which includes photos.
Layers in Google Earth
Google Earth layers allow access to a plethora of data that can be extremely useful when paired with specific locations.
You have direct access to real-time traffic and weather reports as well as Wikipedia, videos, photographs, and much, much more, perhaps more information than is included in Google Earth’s vast collection of imagery, which is enormous.
To access the various layers provided by Google Earth look to the lower left of the display for the Layers application. You can search down through the broader categories to find more specificity, accessing information on a multitude of subjects and from a variety of contributors including many prominent organizations, associations, and individuals.
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Google Earth Folders
The folders of Google Earth Layers are opened by tapping on the plus (+) sign, which allows you to then choose from sub-layers.
Once you find a layer that you would like to see then click on the small box to the left of it. When all of a folder’s layers are turned on you will see a check box, and otherwise it will be green (e.g., when just some of the Google Earth layers in that folder are turned on).
While you are just getting to know Google Earth it is advisable to just turn on a small number of layers, and then once you have finished viewing those particular layers go back and turn them off.
Clicking on Placemark Icons
As you browse around Google Earth make sure to click on some of the Placemark Icons. This will provide you with lots more facts about the particular location.
A good idea is to leave the Terrain layer on (it is located at the bottom of the list) when viewing 3D terrain. This allows you to be able to tilt your view so that you can see hills and valleys, mountains and canyons, and also allows you to dive down into the sea. Turning Terrain on also ensures that the 3D models shown will sit properly on the ground.
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Geographic Web on Google Earth
Geographic Web layers includes Wikipedia photos and information and these layers also include millions of photos provided by computer users from all around the world. In the Gallery you can choose the Google Earth Community layer that revela placemarks from user-provided posts about locations all around the planet.
The Gallery layer also provides information provides by a multitude of organizations from around the globe such as National Geographic, the United Nations, and the Discovery Channel. The available layers in Google Earth continue to evolve and increase over time.
Roads Layer and Geographic Features in Google Earth
By adding the roads layer to Google Earth you can see streets in great detail, and this is provided for numerous countries. The father you zoom in the more detail provided, right down to the street names.
Using the Geographic Features layer you can find names of mountains, volcanoes, bodies of water and other features. You can also use the Borders and Labels layer to see outlines of countries and also names of islands as well as information about disputed borders.
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