Google Earth takes it to the next level. According to a (German) Spiegel article with the promising title “Google Earth gets pimped”, the newest version of Google Earth boasts four times the image data, which supposedly leads to dramatically better photo quality. (And coverage of 20% of the world’s surface in high-res images, which makes up for about 40% of the world’s population.) What’s really cool is the better integration of Sketchup, a free tool to draw up 3D models of buildings for use in Google Earth. So far, 3D models are mostly restricted to major U.S. cities and some Asian sprawls like Hong Kong and Singapore. Not bad, but here you have the tool to model your neighborhood, too. What’s more, the geodata localization got better – no need for coordinates anymore: supposedly the actual address is sufficient. Let’s see how it works. All in all you can say Google sticks to its recent principles: Integration, integration, integration, plus some fancy fun features. If it keeps up with the review, it’s all good. Google definitively opens up the doors for a phantasmorgia of mash-ups even wider.
Spiegel > Netzwelt > Google Earth wird tiefer gelegt