Google Maps 3D Images Available On Google Earth Demo

    June 14, 2005

A number of people have been receiving email invites to download a demo of Google’s upcoming mapping service, Google Earth. One of the bigger announcements concerning Google Earth was the introduction of 3 dimensional representations of different cities.

Apparently, Google is deploying a number of digital camera/laser-equipped trucks to “document and index” certain cities in order to provide these 3D environments, beginning with San Francisco. When news of this endeavor broke, many speculated that this would be a monumental and time-consuming task. However, when you add rumors of third party development into the mix, this may not take as long as some thought.

In fact, 3D city maps are available in the recently launched Google Earth beta test mentioned earlier. According to Danny Sullivan, a number of third party 3D representations have been included in Google Earth’s index, giving users a comprehensive view of nearly 40 different cities.

You can view screenshots of the 3D representations at who provides a thorough look at the Google Earth beta. Users will immediately notice that the buildings in these 3D images are added using graphics (sort of like Sim City), providing users with the viewable third dimension. The best guess is the images from the truck photography project will eventually replace the current ones.

Not only does newrecruit feature screenshots of the 3D maps, they also provide images and blurbs of other Google Earth features, including:

Public Transit
View Railroads, Subway lines and Bus routes along with all their stops. Or select multiple locations and have Google give you directions.

Land Rendering
This was in Keyhole but it’s still amazing. Screenshots really can’t capture how amazing it is to freely move around a 3D world.

The coverage area has been increased over the past month.

You can select places or simply draw a path and then play an animation that will follow it. Or simply just measure the distance between point A and point B.

There are tons of other options and features included with Google Earth as well. Check their report for more info. If you were one of the unlucky ones who didn’t receive a beta invite, be patient. Google Earth should be available to the general public soon.

Chris Richardson is a search engine writer and editor for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest search news.