My Google Map Blog

3D volcanoes and 3D data corruption

by Timothy Whitehead on Sep.29, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

Google recently released 3D imagery for Mount Fuji in Japan. However, we discovered that there are a number of squares of the imagery that appear only in low resolution. We have come across this problem before and interestingly another location with a similar problem is Mount Vesuvius in Italy.


Mount Fuji, Japan.


Mount Vesuvius, Italy.

A third volcano, Mount Saint Helens in Washington State, USA, also has 3D imagery but does not have any problems with the 3D imagery:


Mount Saint Helens, Washington State, USA.

The problem with squares of blurred 3D is not restricted to volcanoes. We know of a number of other places around the world where the same issue occurs. For the ones we know about, download this KML file. If our readers know of any others, please let us know in the comments.


Thank you to GEB reader Samppa for letting us know about this one in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

One location that had a similar problem a couple of years ago was Oslo, Norway. Oddly enough, that seemed to get fixed when the Google Earth client was updated.

Another type of 3D imagery anomaly is this one near Austin, Texas:

The above volcanoes are not the only areas where Google has captured 3D imagery outside urban areas. For a number of US parks see this post and for a number of other non-urban areas see this post.

The post 3D volcanoes and 3D data corruption appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

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Tramps!

by garysleeth on Sep.29, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

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Ring-shaped geoglyphs in Peru

by Timothy Whitehead on Sep.28, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

A recent story in the news is about some ring-shaped geoglyphs in Peru. It took a while to find the correct location in Google Earth, as the given location ‘Quilcapampa, in the Sihuas Valley’ was not recognised by Google Earth.

Once we tracked down the location, we were able to find quite a number of rings. We have marked the ones we found and a few other possibly related structures and also one or two locations that may be unrelated.
To see them in Google Earth, download this KML file.

Below are the clearest circles that we found:

We also found the structures below. There are some circles and a dashed line. We believe they are modern structures.

Other ancient structures in Peru include:

The post Ring-shaped geoglyphs in Peru appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

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Removal man

by sashafromdonetsk on Sep.27, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

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Post-earthquake Kumamoto in Google Earth 3D

by Timothy Whitehead on Sep.27, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

In April this year, the city of Kumamoto, Japan, suffered a series of large earthquakes. Google managed to capture aerial imagery of the city essentially during the event, after the first major event but before the largest shock and then captured another set of imagery from after the event. We had a look at what damage could be seen in the imagery, including a large number of landslides, collapsed buildings and a derailed train. From the overhead imagery it wasn’t easy to see the extent of the damage to buildings, even though we knew, based on ground level imagery, that there was severe damage in some locations. Now Google has updated the 3D imagery for part of Kumamoto with imagery captured after the event, and the extent of the damage to buildings is much clearer, especially because the roofs have been patched with light blue tarpaulin that is highly visible.


The suburb of Mashiki was the worst hit, and many houses are damaged beyond repair.


A historical building known as Janes’ Residence was completely destroyed. The rubble has been covered in the light blue tarpaulins

The Janes’ Residence was the first western-style house built in Kumamoto dating from 1871. It used to be in the grounds of Kumamoto Castle, but has been moved a number of times. Read more about it here.


Kumamoto Castle was badly damaged by the earthquake.

We have also created a Google Earth tour of the area showing all the light blue roofs, which you can view in Google Earth with this KML file or see in the YouTube video below.

The post Post-earthquake Kumamoto in Google Earth 3D appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

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Dense beard

by sashafromdonetsk on Sep.26, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

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Taiwan wants Google to censor satellite imagery

by Timothy Whitehead on Sep.26, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

A recent story in the news says that Taiwan’s Defense Ministry has asked Google to blur imagery of some military structures on Itu Aba Island (also known as Taiping Island) in the South China Sea.

The South China Sea is a hotly contested area with several countries, most notabley China, building structures on the reefs of the Spratleys. We had a look at the progress last year and had a look at the latest imagery of Fiery Cross Reef in June this year.

As we have discussed before, censoring satellite imagery is more difficult than censoring other data. A number of countries censor aerial data, mapping data and 3D imagery and because those are often gathered within the countries in question, Google must comply with local laws. But satellite imagery is more difficult to censor. I has been done. It is illegal in the US to publish high resolution imagery of Israel, and Google is a US company so Israel appears in relatively low resolution in Google Maps and Google Earth. Also, imagery updates were stopped for Iraq, Afghanistan, the Ukraine and Syria although we do not know exactly how that was accomplished.

Back to this particular case, if the story is correct and if that was the only facility that Taiwan asked Google to censor, then it would appear they made a serious error. The result has been that many news outlets have published the imagery and it is now not only practically impossible to get rid of all those images, but it has become an object of attention. In addition, Google will be very unlikely to agree to censor it unless legal pressure can be brought to bear. If they were to censor it, a lot of people will notice, and it will become another news story, and then a lot of other countries will want their censorship requests to be honoured as well.

Another question would be who Taiwan wishes to hide the imagery from. Even if Google removed the image, it could still be purchased from the supplier Digital Globe, or imagery of the location could be ordered from various other commercial suppliers. A number of states also have their own spy satellites and the countries most interested in the region could probably capture aerial imagery of it if they wished.

The image that Taiwan wants censored is dated July 8th, 2016 and can only be seen in the default layer as it has not yet (as of this writing) been put in historical imagery.

The military structure in question can be seen below:

We have also created an animation showing that the airport was built since 2006 and the harbour is also being expanded.


The post Taiwan wants Google to censor satellite imagery appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

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Police has partitioned off the road

by sashafromdonetsk on Sep.25, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

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Don’t ride the superhero cows

by StreetViewFun.com on Sep.24, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

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Space debris

by sashafromdonetsk on Sep.23, 2016, under 3D Models, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, California, Denmark, England, Germany, Google Earth News, Google Earth Tips, Google Sky, Google maps, Hawaii, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Natural Landmarks, Netherlands, Sightseeing, Street Views, USA

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