Last week we pointed out that some of the Google Earth weather layers were out of date. Google fixed the problem soon after, and at about the same time added a tantalizing new layer that just says ‘Coming soon’. This may be timed to coincide with Google Earth’s 10th birthday this coming Sunday, June 28th. According to Wikipedia, Google Earth was first released under the Google brand name on June 28th, 2005, although it was release as Google Earth 3.0 as it was a continuation of a previous product called Keyhole that had been in existence since 2001.
While you wait for the new layer(s) to appear, this would be a good time to go through all the layers that already exist and see if you can find something interesting you may have missed. We have been looking through the layers ourselves and found that although some of them are not being maintained by the data providers the majority of the layers work quite well and have a wealth of useful information.
We also discovered that the roads layer has recently seen an update – we are not sure exactly when. It had previously not been updated for over a year, so we are glad to see this update. Finally, some street names in Livingstone, Zambia, that we added to Google Maps last September are now in Google Earth. Although strangely, a name correction we made in Google Maps has not been carried through. ‘Libala Drive’ is supposed to be ‘Airport Road’ and the correct name is shown in Google Maps.
Mashable recently posted an article titled “10 Google Earth Tips for Power Users” that gained quite a bit of attention. If you read our site very often you’re likely already familiar with the tips, but it’s a good refresher nonetheless.
6 – Create and View Maps
One of the core uses of Google Earth is the ability to load and save KML files, which make it so easy to share information and locations with other people.
7 – Build in 3D
While tools like SketchUp can help you to build detailed 3D models, there are some nifty tools built in to Google Earth to help you quickly create simple structures.
8 – Explore the Sea
Added as part of Google Earth 5, the 3D Ocean is an amazing feature to explore.
9 – Explore Space
Google added the Night Sky feature to Google Earth way back in 2007, and it provides a great interface to explore the stars. They also just added a new “starry sky” background to Google Earth as part of version 7.1, greatly adding to the realism of the product.
10 – Use Google Earth Offline
The ability to use Google Earth offline can be very handy from time to time, and this post explains how to get started with it.
All in all, it’s really a pretty solid list. Check out their full article here, then leave a comment below and let us know what your favorite power user tip is.