Google has just unveiled “Building Maker”, an incredibly easy-to-use tool that will help them quickly expand their collection of 3D buildings.
To use Building Maker, simply choose a city from the list of 50 that they provide, and then find a building you want to model. In the browser, use the tools to outline the building. When you have it lined up, click the next image (different view of the same building) and tweak the alignment. Repeat this on a few different images until everything is lined up perfectly, then submit the building. That’s it!
The only downside is that Building Maker currently only works in certain areas near big cities, so the scope is somewhat limited. This is because they need to have imagery from enough different angles for the process to be successful. I would think they’ll be rolling it out to wider areas as more imagery becomes available.
Watch the video below for more information, or visit the Building Maker site to get started.
About Mickey Mellen
Mickey has been using Google Earth since it was released in 2005, and has created a variety of geo-related sites including Google Earth Hacks. He runs a web design firm in Marietta, GA, where he lives with his wife and two kids.