My Google Map Blog

Disturbed head

by Willi1 on May.05, 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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Snapsat Beta for Landsat imagery

by Timothy Whitehead on May.04, 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

We have previously had a look at how to get Landsat imagery into Google Earth. We have used a number of different techniques over time, but in all cases, obtaining high quality Landsat imagery required a large download (typically over 700 Mb) and several stages of image processing to combine multiple bands into a full colour image.

We recently discovered Snapsat, a website dedicated to making it easier to obtain processed Landsat imagery. In March last year, Amazon announced the availability of Landsat data on Amazon Web Services (AWS). Snapsat builds on the AWS, offering to provide easy access and processing of the Landsat data. It appears to have been set up mid last year not long after the Landsat data was made available on AWS but not much work appears to have been done on it since then. However, it still works well and makes obtaining processed Landsat imagery remarkably easy. Learn how to use it here.

As we mentioned in this post there was a Tornado which struck Dallas, Texas in December last year. There is no imagery yet in Google Earth showing the main path of destruction. So we tried out Snapsat by downloading a Landsat image of Dallas from January 12th. The process was straight forward and only required a download of 107 Mb as opposed to the 772 Mb required to download the same imagery from Earth Explorer. And we can see the track of the tornado.


Tornado track, Dallas, Texas, as seen in Landsat imagery. Ends of the track marked with arrows.

There are, however, a few disadvantages to using Snapsat. The website does not do pansharpening, a process whereby a higher resolution grey-scale image is used in combination with the three colour bands to create a higher resolution image overall. This means that the imagery obtained via Snapsat is not the highest quality possible. Another issue is that the downloaded file does not include Geo-coding information so it cannot be automatically imported into Google Earth Pro. However, since we usually have to crop the imagery anyway, manual positioning is often necessary and not very difficult.

We got the same image from Earth Explorer and used GIMP to process the imagery (very inexpertly) and the result is noticeably sharper because of the pansharpening.


Tornado track, Dallas, Texas, as seen in Landsat imagery, with basic pansharpening via GIMP

To see the two overlays in Google Earth download this KML file.

The post Snapsat Beta for Landsat imagery appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

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Where the 2016 Olympic games opening ceremony will take place

by StreetViewFun.com on May.04, 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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Google Street View go boating in Canada

by StreetViewFun.com on May.04, 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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What’s that image: Earthquake and floods

by Timothy Whitehead on May.03, 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

Yesterday we mentioned that Google had pushed out an imagery update towards the end of April. Today we are having a look at some of the sights we have found so far.

On April 16th, 2016, Ecuador experienced an earthquake of magnitude 7.8. Google Earth has three satellite images captured the day after. All three images seem to have a bug where you cannot see the previous image in historical imagery but have to go back two dates to see prior imagery. Perdenales, Ecuador was not far from the epicentre of the earthquake and a number of buildings collapsed. The satellite imagery is not very high quality, but the devastation is visible if you look closely. To identify collapsed buildings, look for rubble in the streets rather than at the buildings, then compare with older imagery. See the fourth image in the slideshow in this story to see an aerial view.

before
after

Collapsed buildings in Perdenales, Ecuador.

Further south, in the town of Portoviejo we found a collapsed building as well as signs of minor flooding.

before
after

Collapsed building in Portoviejo, Ecuador.

The southern United States seems to have experienced a lot of flooding lately. Earlier this month we had a look at the flooding of the Mississippi River, which took place in January this year. There are now a number of images captured in mid March that show flooding in Texas and Louisiana.


The Sabine River floods Deweyville, Texas.


The Red River in flood near Coushatta, Louisiana.


The Ouachita River, Louisiana.

There are also satellite images of Austin and Houston, Texas, captured on March 12th. We are not sure if they relate to flooding and have not yet identified anything unusual in the images.

There has been further flooding in April, but there is not yet any relevant imagery.

For the locations featured in this post download this KML file. We have included in the KML some data from the USGS showing the epicentre of the quake and the area of impact.

The post What’s that image: Earthquake and floods appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

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Ducky duck duck

by tmblwd53 on May.03, 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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A year of imagery updates in Google Earth

by Timothy Whitehead on May.02, 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

As we mentioned last week, Google did at least four imagery updates in the month of April. It takes long time to do imagery update maps and since imagery updates include imagery over a number of different months it could take up to a week to do maps for the last few months. So we thought of changing our algorithm to do them all at once. This is faster overall but still takes days to complete. We also decided to do the last twelve months, since it wasn’t too much extra trouble to do so. We are not yet done with the high resolution maps, but we can give a good idea of where updates were done over the past year.


Imagery updates over the past year – May 2015 to April 2016

The above animation uses NASA’s Blue Marble images taken from the animation that Frank did back in 2006. We did not include the poles in our imagery update maps, so there may have been some imagery updates for Antarctica and northern Greenland that we have missed.

Notice how the imagery avoids the snow line in the northern hemisphere. The pattern in the tropics is not as clear as the map we did last week showing how seasonal Google Earth imagery is.

You can also see the animation in Google Earth using this KML file.

For best results:

  • adjust the timeline control so that the two parts of the slider are snapped together.
  • in the timeline control settings dialog, set the animation speed to maximum, and tick ‘loop animation’.
  • press the ‘play animation button’ on the timeline control.
  • you may have to wait for a few loops of the animation for all the images to load properly.

The post A year of imagery updates in Google Earth appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

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Dude, what happened?

by StreetViewFun.com on May.01, 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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Hello Mr. Beaver!

by Willi1 on May.01, 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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Car Crash

by whawor on Apr.30, 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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