News Roundup 1 – Education, Clean Cruising, Magnalox, NASA UAVSAR

Sometimes I get floods of E-mails for things to write about at Google Earth Blog, and I can’t devote full time to review them all. So, I occasionally write News Roundups to try and give interesting content a chance to be seen.

  • Education – While visiting last year’s American Geophysical Union (AGU) conference in San Francisco, I met several educators using Google Earth to teach science in the classroom. Tavia Prouhet and Jerry Cook, who provide science curriculum material for middle school science classes, wrote to let me know about their two interesting science class room activities at the Joint Oceanographic Institutions web site here and here. Each of these has student guides in PDF format and an associated Google Earth file for visualization. Thanks Tavia!

  • Clean Cruising – Australian-based travel agency Clean Cruising makes good use of Google Maps and Google Earth to help travelers learn more about destinations. I like the fact that they highlight environmentally oriented cruise itineraries with Google Earth files showing the route and highlights of the trip. See for example their entry on this Alaskan cruise which shows a Google Maps version of the route on the web page, and also offers this Google Earth version for a real flying tour. They also offer short video clips using Google Earth for a flying tour. More travel agencies should be doing this! Thanks Dan!

  • MagnaloxMagnalox recently received some upgrades. Magnalox is probably one of the best, if not the best, tools for creating very interactive maps to show trip maps. It has all kinds of capabilities which are so powerful it is difficult to describe (see earlier review at GEB). Uploading a GPS track enables a wealth of possibilities with Magnalox, but you can build maps in other ways as well. Check out an example of a Magnalog. And, here’s the Google Earth version of the same map – which is automatically generated for you. Thanks Volker!

  • NASA UAVSAR – NASA, in usual acronymic fashion, has a project called Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle Synthetic Aperature Radar (UAVSAR). This mission will eventually use unmanned planes to fly highly accurate flights over areas of terrain on the Earth and map them using a super detailed three dimensional side looking radar system. They currently plan to start with a manned Gulfstream 3 jet for testing and then will begin experimenting with unmanned systems. NASA has developed a typical mission profile and Google Earth can be used to visualize a flight . Thanks to Bruce for the tip.

    About Frank Taylor

    Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was released. He worked in 3D graphics for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank left in 2009 to circumnavigate the earth by sailboat as part of the Tahina Expedition.



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