News Roundup: Flight Sim Tips, Clouds and Weather, KML 2.2, Google Solar Panels, Pollution

  • Flight Sim Tips – If you’re looking for starting tips for the new flight simulator in Google Earth, check out my flight sim basic tips post. Also, at the bottom of the HUD guide post, there is a note about an advanced tip describing how to find the configuration files for the GE flight simulator, and several comments on how to modify them. Google says you can always re-install GE to get the config files back to default. Also, you can use “CTRL-ALT-SHIFT-R” to reload the aircraft and planet config files on the fly.

  • Clouds and Weather – James Stafford has posted GE time animations showing global cloud patterns back to May of 2006 all in a handy Google Earth cloud animation file (note: each month is >16 Mbytes). You can also watch a video showing all the clouds in 15 months in about 40 seconds. Meanwhile, GuiWeather has announced they have enhanced their buoy and ship observations weather file. They have a fast growing list of great weather files for GE here.

  • KML 2.2 – Google has posted some details about KML 2.2 with lots of links to new documentation. One big point I haven’t mentioned before is that KML 2.2 offers some new tags allowing you to create custom description bubbles for your KML in a much better way than before. Google has added better documentation on the new tags. They also indicate that KML 2.2 will be leaving beta soon and are asking for input from developers.

  • Googleplex solar panels

    Google Solar Panels – Google has graced the Googleplex (their headquarters) with solar panels. Their solar web site includes some aerial photos of the new installation. Valery35 has used the new GE 4.2 to create photo overlays so you can see the photos in GE . If you turn on the 3D Buildings layer, you can also see the solar panels on the Googleplex in 3D.

  • Pollution – Google recently posted about some new environmental content various organizations have created with Google’s mapping products. For Google Earth, the Commission for Environmental Cooperation has made an excellent GE visualization of pollution data for North America . And, ‘tegandrew’ at the GEC has posted a similar visualization for pollution in Australia .

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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