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March 29 2017

13:34

Google Earth Tour builder: Part 3 – Labelling

This is part 3 of our Tour Builder series where we try to develop tools to make creating Google Earth Tours easier.

When you create a tour that visits a list of locations, one thing you want to do is display the name of the location to the user. There are a number of possible ways to do this:

Basic Placemarks.
Probably the easiest method is to simply create a placemark with the appropriate name and an icon of your choice, or remove the icon altogether. You can adjust the font size and colour in the placemarks style settings, but it is has limited flexibility. In addition, if you are distributing your Google Earth Tour, labels can be affected by the settings in the users copy of Google Earth as well as screen shape and size.

A simple customised placemark label.

Placemark balloons.
Placemark balloons can contain HTML including css and JavaScript, which makes them very flexible. With JavaScript you can even animate the contents of the balloon. However, there are still significant limitations. Although you can get rid of the ‘directions’ row in the balloon, the border and close button cannot be customised or removed nor can the balloon be made transparent. You can position the balloon in the corner of the screen by putting the placemark off the edge of the screen, but as shown below, the balloon always leaves a margin between it and the edge of the screen.

Post-production.
If you are making your tour into a video, then the best option is probably to add most of your text using video editing tools.

Screen Overlays.
A Screen Overlay is a KML feature that allows you to place an image onscreen at the location of your choosing. This is what is typically used for map keys or logos in KML files. PNG files with transparency are allowed which is a significant advantage over placemark balloons. The main disadvantage of this technique is that it only allows images and not text or HTML so you must put your text into an image prior to creating the KML file.
It is also possible to use Google Earth Tour features to animate the image, sliding it onto the screen at the appropriate point in the Tour. You can try this tour to see it in action.

The post Google Earth Tour builder: Part 3 – Labelling appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

March 28 2017

20:30
How we stop fraudulent apps from holding you ransom
20:30
How we stop fraudulent apps from holding you ransom
16:30
With Hidden Figures, Google Play and Made with Code team up to encourage teen girls to code
16:00
With connected devices, a smarter home is just an “Ok Google” away
16:00
With Hidden Figures, Google Play and Made with Code team up to encourage teen girls to code
16:00
With connected devices, a smarter home is just an “Ok Google” away
14:00
Google app: the ultimate Search tool for iPhone users
14:00
Google app: the ultimate Search tool for iPhone users
10:07

Whales in Google Earth

We recently came accross this interesting article about counting whales using DigitalGlobe’s satellite imagery. Unfortunately the imagery in question has not made it into Google Earth. We have several times, without success, searched through satellite imagery of Hermanus, South Africa, a popular whale watching location where Southern Right Whales come to calf every year. So, we did an internet search and found remarkably few sightings. We believe this is due to a combination of factors. Google Earth does not show much satellite imagery beyond a thin strip of ocean along the coast, and when it does, the resolution is dramatically reduced. Also the resolution of most satellite imagery is barely good enough to identify whales.

Here are the only finds we know about:


Off the coast of Maui, Hawaii. Found via twistedsifter.com.


Unknown species off Fraser Island, on the Eastern coast of Australia. Found via artcepts.blogspot.co.za.


Beluga Whales, Erwin Bay, Somerset Island, Nunavut, CanadaFound via the Google Earth Community


Southern Right Whales, Golfo Nuevo, Argentina. Found via googlesightseeing.com.

To find the above locations in Google Earth download this KML file.

If you know of any other whale sightings in Google Earth, please let us know in the comments.

The post Whales in Google Earth appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

08:30
Google Home and Wifi arrive in the UK
08:30
Google Home and Wifi arrive in the UK

March 27 2017

17:00
The She Word: Rosie Rios, former U.S. Treasurer, “Be brave, be empowered, be yourself.”
17:00
The She Word: Rosie Rios, former U.S. Treasurer, “Be brave, be empowered, be yourself.”
11:18

Google Earth Tour builder: Part 2 – Arcs between locations

This is part 2 of a series where we gradually create a Google Earth Tour builder tool. We started last week with a tool that took a set of placemarks and created a tour that circles each placemark. The problem was the transition between placemarks just relied on Google Earth’s ‘fly to’ feature and wasn’t very nice at all. So today, we are adding an arcing flight between placemarks and more customization to the circling feature.

We get the view distance (range, in metres) and view angle (tilt) from the placemark.

Be sure to let us know in the comments if you find any bugs and any suggestions for further improvement / extra features.

input,select{padding:4px;color:black;border:none}input[type="file"]{width:250px;}table input{width:60px;}

Create Tour

The post Google Earth Tour builder: Part 2 – Arcs between locations appeared first on Google Earth Blog.

08:00
Data Journalism Awards 2017: Call for submissions
08:00
Data Journalism Awards 2017: Call for submissions

March 24 2017

23:00
Take your shot. Let Google give you the Assist(ant).
23:00
Take your shot. Let Google give you the Assist(ant).
18:30
The High Five: game time and morphin’ time
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