The best of Google Earth for May 2016

A year of imagery updates in Google EarthThere were several imagery updates in May and we kicked off the month by showing an animation of all the imagery in Google Earth from the past year. The animation helped to show the seasonality of imagery, something we looked at in more detail last month.
 
 

The Kumamoto earthquakesWe had a look at a number of interesting sites in the imagery. The most interesting was the devastation caused by the Kumamoto earthquakes in Japan. We saw damaged houses, major landslides, mud slides, collapsed bridges and a derailed train. The imagery was captured on consecutive days during a sequence of major shocks, which allowed us to see not only the progression of the damage but also see the damage, as it was immediately after the events.

Other events we looked at during the month included:

The Fort McMurray WildfireWe also had a look at some events that have not yet got relevant imagery in Google Earth. For this we turned to other sources of satellite imagery. One such event was the Fort McMurray wildfire in Alberta, Canada, and we were able to find a remarkable amount of imagery from a variety of sources. We also had a look at a tornado track in Dallas, Texas, while discussing Snapsat Beta, a tool for accessing Landsat data and we also compared it with imagery of the same location from Sentinel data.

Street View comes to KyrgyzstanThis month Kyrgyzstan became the latest country to get Street View. Be sure to check it out as it is a scenic country with snow-capped mountain ranges.
 
 
 

Seeing worm poo from spaceSimilar to previous stories on fairy circles and ant and termite cities we discovered that if you know where to look, you can actually see worm poo from space.
 
 
 

Getting HIRISE imagery into Google MarsWe had a look at how to get HIRISE imagery of Mars into Google Earth.
 
 
 
 

Take LaBeouf, Rönkkö & Turner anywhereWe had a look at a cryptic message using GPS coordinates posted on twitter by American actor Shia LaBeouf. It turned out to be a clever advertisement for a geographic art project called Take Me Anywhere that he is doing with artists Nastja Säde Rönkkö & Luke Turner.
 
 

Terrapattern, the search engine for imageryWe had a look at a clever aerial and satellite imagery search engine called Terrapattern. We were very impressed and hope to see it expanded and improved in the future as well as other similar products becoming common place. It has the potential to add a whole new dimension to the way we use maps.
 
 

Animating Lusaka, ZambiaWe noticed that Lusaka, Zambia, has near weekly imagery for the last couple of years, which was the perfect opportunity for creating some animations.
 
 
 

3D imagery slow down?We have noticed a slowdown in the amount of new 3D imagery released by Google and speculated that this is because they have covered most of the major population centres in the areas they are most active in.
 
 

Controlling maps in the days of satellite imagingWe discussed the effectiveness of trying to censor maps in the days of satellite imagery. This was triggered by India considering passing a law requiring map providers to meet certain conditions, including requiring them to show disputed borders in India’s favour. It also wishes to censor certain locations, but given that they do not have control over satellite imagery it seems like a largely futile attempt. The law is still under discussion and has major opposition from within India as well as complaints by Pakistan.

Why there are stripes in the snow on GreenlandWe had a look at some strange stripes in the imagery of Greenland and explained that the cause is a fault on the Landsat 7 satellite.

About Timothy Whitehead

Timothy has been using Google Earth since 2004 when it was still called Keyhole before it was renamed Google Earth in 2005 and has been a huge fan ever since. He is a programmer working for Red Wing Aerobatx and lives in Cape Town, South Africa.






PLEASE NOTE: Google Earth Blog is no longer writing regular posts. As a result, we are not accepting new comments or questions about Google Earth. If you have a question, use the official Google Earth and Maps Forums or the Google Earth Community Forums.

Comments

  1. Google Earth and Google Maps are the great things that we have from Google. GPS is the greatest thing that has helped us grow more.

  2. tavakolian says:

    the photos are taken from what distance from earth

  3. ben reuter says:

    Thank you google!
    There is a new update of the Russian Naval Yard at Severodvinsk exposing the longest submarine of the world, the BS-64
    http://up.picr.de/25779409zn.jpg

  4. There are no updates on several areas that I know look dramatically different over the past two to three years. So the only way to get an area updated is to have a natural disaster? rubbish.



PLEASE NOTE: Google Earth Blog is no longer writing regular posts. As a result, we are not accepting new comments or questions about Google Earth. If you have a question, use the official Google Earth and Maps Forums or the Google Earth Community Forums.