Google Earth Blog
Last week DigitalGlobe, one of the primary suppliers of imagery for Google Earth, was given permission to sell higher resolution imagery. Previously they’ve been limited to selling 50 centimeter imagery, but that limitation has been dropped. They’ll now be able to sell their 41 centimeter imagery, and that will drop to 25 centimeter later this year.
While the difference doesn’t sound like much, Mapbox did a great comparison showing how much better 40 centimeter imagery looks when compared to 50 centimeter imagery.
If going from 50 cm resolution to 40 cm resolution sounds like a small change at first, remember that we’re talking about square pixels. When square A is only ¼ longer on a side than square B, it contains more than 150% as much area. Therefore, a slightly smaller linear size means a lot more clarity.
No word on when exactly we’ll begin to see this new imagery, but it sounds like we’ll see some of it within the next few months.
(via the Verge)
Esther Polak and Ivar van Bekkum from 250 Miles are trying to create a NavDoc of the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania this year and they need your help. They explain the word “NavDoc” as follows:
Esther Polak and Ivar van Bekkum, operating under the name PolakVanBekkum, invented the term NavDoc for their project “250 Miles Crossing Philadelphia,” which will be executed in the second half of 2014.
For those who do not know, you can make movies in Google Earth! The NavDoc that PolakVanBekkum will be producing will solely run in Google Earth. This feature is mostly used for presentations about geography-related events. PolakVanBekkum use it, amongst other media, for a more poetic visualization of their work.
It’s a great idea and a very ambitious project. You can follow their progress on 250miles.net.
Hurricane season is here, and Google has recently put out a helpful blog posts with tips for staying safe. Specifically, they suggest three things:
Make sure your phone will receive Public Alerts
Google Public Alerts, launched two years ago, is a tool that sends people alerts from authoritative sources like the U.S. National Weather Service or the Japan Meteorological Agency during emergencies. They’re accessible through the Google search app on your mobile devices and Google Chrome on your computer, as well as in search results for related queries and on Google Maps when relevant.
Install emergency preparedness apps
There are a number of great apps which can help you prepare for or outlast an emergency. For example, a flashlight app can be useful if the power goes out and you don’t have access to a regular flashlight (use a regular flashlight if you can to conserve your phone’s battery). The first-aid and disaster preparedness apps from the Red Cross have a lot of valuable information. And the official FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) app has information on how to stay safe during a disaster, the locations of FEMA disaster recovery stations, and more.
Get helpful gadgets
A waterproof phone case can help protect your phone during floods or heavy rains and a portable solar-powered charger will help keep your phone’s battery alive. It may also be a good idea to invest in a cell phone signal booster which gives you a greater chance of connecting to an operational cell tower.
Beyond those tips, there are ways to watch and track severe weather using Google Earth. Hurricane data can be found in the main “places” layer of Google Earth, and there are many other great tools to help track the weather by using other layers and downloadable files.
Check out the full post on the Google Lat Long Blog and stay safe out there!