One of Google Earth’s most powerful features is the ability to pull in real-time information from other sites and overlay the information for visualization (thanks to the network link). Weather data is one of my favorite applications in Google Earth of this ability. Imagine pulling in the latest satellite photos, radar animations, hurricane tracking, live web cams on the ground, sea surface temperature analysis, etc. Well, you can do all that with the set of the very best weather tools for Google Earth which GEB has bundled together into this: the weather and storm tracking tools collection . Simply drag this network link into your Places folder to keep it handy. It won’t take up space until you turn it on. It first loads several folders of weather tools you can explore. You may want to turn only one layer on at a time – these layers weren’t designed to all be turned on at once. Although, some of the layers are complimentary (like current lightning strikes with clouds or storms turned on). Read more about the storm tracking tools.
Google has added a new Hurricane Season 2009 layer in the Weather layer folder. It also will automatically highlight current named storms. But, the tools in the collection above will take you much further if you have an interest in weather. Check out this GEB video of storm tracking (from 2007) in Google Earth:
NOTE: Many of these storm tracking tools have been around for some time. While they are still cool, I’d love to see some weather sites using the Google Earth API to full advantage. Weather data is great stuff when viewed in Google Earth.