Barnabu 3D News – Animating International Flights in Google Earth

James Stafford, better known at the Google Earth Community as “Barnabu”, certainly gets kudos (5 globes from me) for continuing to innovate ways to use 3D models, time animation, and other features of Google Earth’s KML to create unique visualizations. During the past week or so (after turning GE into the Solar System) James has done a couple of neat things:

  • International Flight Animations – most recently he has developed some very nice animations showing flights from various US airports to destinations world-wide. He has exaggerated the flight altitudes and highlighted their tracks, shows large plane icons briefly as they land, and produces destination labels with flight times at the end of each flight. The results are very cool to view in Google Earth since you can spin the globe and watch the planes reach their far flung destinations. He has produced a single file which shows all the international flights (300+) from the four busiest international airports in the USA: New York Kennedy, Chicago O’Hare, Miami International and Los Angeles (LAX). You can view the International flights now. Just hit the right-arrow “play” button to the right of the time slider after it loads. Or you can watch a short video James made of the animation:

  • London Eye Animation Update – The recent imagery update to Google Earth changed the coloration for London. James realized this meant he would need to update his London Eye animation because he had “photoshopped” the older satellite photo to remove the satellite view of the London Eye ferris wheel and its shadow so he could overlay his own 3D model and shadow for realism. He describes in his blog the process he used to do this (using Gimp instead of PhotoShop). See more about the London Eye animation.

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.

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