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Thread: Google Earth as Entertainment

  1. #1
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Google Earth as Entertainment

    Not only is Google Earth a useful tool, it’s also a lot of fun. What sorts of things or places do you tend to look at purely for the entertainment value? I’ll bet one of the first things nearly everyone does is zoom in where they live and see how good the resolution is of their home. I’m guessing other popular things to look at are landmark structures – e.g. the Pyramids in Egypt, the Eiffel Tower, Red Square, or the former location of the Twin Towers.

    Personally, I have a preoccupation with obscure and remote locations. For whatever reason I like to zoom in on small islands in the Hebrides, or in the Solomons, or look at the isolated settlements dotting the coast of the Arctic Ocean in the Northwest Territories, Alaska, or Siberia, or maybe some village in midst of the Gobi Desert. When I look at the tiny communities in such locations I wonder about the people’s lives that dwell there; why do they live there? What do they do for a living? What contact do they have with the ‘outside world’? What is their daily existence like?

    Other things I find entertaining to do are to look at farms in different parts of the world and compare their shapes and layout and speculate how and why they assume the form they do. Military installations are always fun to look at – you can’t help but wonder how much benefit countries without satellites gain in terms of the intelligence Google Earth offers. Granted, the images are months old and only a moment captured in time, even so I could still see how such images could be of use (for the record, sensitive areas on US military installations don’t usually offer good resolution. e.g. take a look at Fort Knox, in Kentucky. No Goldfinger is going to be using Google Earth to plan his next heist! )

    What do you look at when you use Google Earth?
    Last edited by Maister; 13 Apr 2007 at 10:43 AM.

  2. #2
    maudit anglais
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    Use it a fair bit for work, figuring out lane configurations, and such.

    I like looking at railway stuff, and have used it as a research tool in planning a model railway. Unfortunately the area I'm looking at to base a layout on is right on the boundary between high-res and low-res imaging.

    I sometimes like to let the program "fly" and see where I end up.

  3. #3
    Corn Burning Fool giff57's avatar
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    I like to have the community turned on. There are notes to many obscure things like bigfoot sighting reports. It is also kind of neat to see the planes caught in flight.
    “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall”
    Jean-Jacques Rousseau

  4. #4
    Cyburbian TOFB's avatar
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    This is an old thread. Since then, I have found

    www.googlesightseeing.com

    Fun stuff.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
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    I like looking at sports stadiums (Qwest Field in Seattle has a game going on, last time I checked) and the Rose Bowl was gearing up for the Michigan/USC game.
    Airports are cool too.

    I will have to try looking at remote settlements.
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone
    -Peart

  6. #6
    Cyburbian the north omaha star's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by zmanPLAN View post
    I like looking at sports stadiums (Qwest Field in Seattle has a game going on, last time I checked) and the Rose Bowl was gearing up for the Michigan/USC game.
    Airports are cool too.

    I will have to try looking at remote settlements.
    WOW!! I do the same thing. I also saw the Seahawks game. Its' the only stadium that I saw that has a game going on. Some of the maps have been updated. The Missouri River and Carter Lake were frozen over in the first edition of Google Earth, now they're usually muddy selves (spring). Sometimes I use Microsoft Live Search for the Birds Eye View
    I am recognizing that the voice inside my head
    is urging me to be myself but never follow someone else
    Because opinions are like voices we all have a different kind". --Q-Tip

  7. #7
    Cyburbian TOFB's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by zmanPLAN View post
    I like looking at sports stadiums (Qwest Field in Seattle has a game going on, last time I checked) and the Rose Bowl was gearing up for the Michigan/USC game.
    Airports are cool too.

    I will have to try looking at remote settlements.
    Cal and the Phillies also have games going on.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian wahday's avatar
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    I like to go visit places I used to live and relive my experiences there from on high. My favorite feature is the tilt, allowing you to gaze out across the landscape like floating in a hot air balloon. Tap the mouse and you are sailing blissfully along over your favorite environs. Hey, isn't that my old house? Too cool...
    The purpose of life is a life of purpose

  9. #9
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Off-topic:
    If you go to Google Maps and Get Directions from New York to London, step 23 is truly classic. They even calculate in an adequate time frame!
    "A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom. Time makes more converts than reason." - Thomas Paine Common Sense.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian jmac's avatar
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    Our IT department just busted a bunch of folks for having the "free" version of Google Earth on our PCs because it could be used for business purposes. Apparently, the professional license costs a few hundred bucks a year.

    I miss Google Earth already.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian biscuit's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by jmac View post
    Our IT department just busted a bunch of folks for having the "free" version of Google Earth on our PCs because it could be used for business purposes. Apparently, the professional license costs a few hundred bucks a year.

    I miss Google Earth already.
    Breaking the law, breaking the law, da, da.

    Thanks for the heads-up though. i should probably check with my firms IT guys before I load it on my desktop.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian martini's avatar
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    I like going out and following forest roads, seeing 'where' they go. I also go back to roads I've driven in the past, trying to relive memories.

    I also followed the Tour day France last year from a team that used GPS units and live-linked to GE. That was kinda cool to 'see' the race in real time from 'space'.
    You're more boring than you know.

  13. #13
    Cyburbian
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    I looked in on the repairs in new orleans - all the blue tarped roofs.

    I have used it for student projects, figuring lot size, distance to market rivals, etc.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    After I got my secret santa gift this past Dec, I used it to see the town The One lives in. Just curious. (Boy are you in the middle of nowhere!)

    I 've used it to check out towns I've been through, and rural roads I've been on. Sometimes I see an interesting sign while I'm driving, and don't have time to stop, so I check to see what's there. Like "Convict Spring" FL; it's just a pasture.

  15. #15
    Cyburbian Wannaplan?'s avatar
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    This is a test. I am going to try to upload a Google Earth placemark file that I created - I call it "My Favorite Tree." If it attaches, post here if you can view it.

    Edit: It did not attach. I have an idea(!!)... update coming soon!
    Last edited by Wannaplan?; 21 Jul 2007 at 3:57 PM. Reason: File did not attach

  16. #16
    Cyburbian
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    prefer windows live search over google earth, no fancy software to download and you can do birds eye view, create your own routes, calculate areas, etc.

    http://maps.live.com/

    although i prefer google's search engine over microsoft hands down

  17. #17
    Cyburbian Wannaplan?'s avatar
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    Here's the file I created earlier. Please let me know if it doesn't load properly.

    Dan: You should see how Cyburbia can support KMZ files as attachments.
    Last edited by Wannaplan?; 21 Jul 2007 at 5:21 PM. Reason: Updated URL

  18. #18
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    I've said it before, but I like looking for North American-style suburban development in countries where one would least expect it. Add Maister's love for interesting isolated islands, and you'll find the two together on the Canary Islands and, to an even greater extent, Madeira.

  19. #19
    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    OK, I tried to save a map, but when I saved it it seemed LIVE and changeable to anybody who opened it. So, I deleted it. I'll have to call Maister on the bat phone to see if saving the image the way I saved it is legal. I am a jerk with this stuff.

    Bear
    Occupy Cyburbia!

  20. #20
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Wanigas? View post
    Dan: You should see how Cyburbia can support KMZ files as attachments.
    Off-topic:
    Done. Check it out, and see if it works.

  21. #21
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan View post
    I've said it before, but I like looking for North American-style suburban development in countries where one would least expect it. Add Maister's love for interesting isolated islands, and you'll find the two together on the Canary Islands and, to an even greater extent, Madeira.
    Interesting you should mention it, quite recently I was looking at Madiera (and yes noticed the residential pattern)
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  22. #22
    Cyburbian Wannaplan?'s avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan View post
    Off-topic:
    Done. Check it out, and see if it works.

    I think this should do it.

    EDIT: I clicked the attachment, and it loaded into GE. Awesome! This is a great way for planners to share geographic information and to collaborate!
    Attached Files Attached Files

  23. #23
    Cyburbian ICT/316's avatar
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    I may have said this before and you may all ready know about it, but type in “Secret Places of Google Earth” on YOU TUBE! Cool, to say the least. Try and find your own “secret places!

    Also, check out boarder crossings and a Dan favorite (classic) ghost developments!

    Bill

  24. #24
         
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    Quote Originally posted by jmac View post
    Our IT department just busted a bunch of folks for having the "free" version of Google Earth on our PCs because it could be used for business purposes. Apparently, the professional license costs a few hundred bucks a year.

    I miss Google Earth already.
    *Whistles innocently*

  25. #25
    Cyburbian
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    As entertainment.... I have used it to look around in Hawaii checking out the filming locations of Lost... and of course looking around place everywhere... Japanese islands and other pacific islands that were involved in WWII battles are quite a view... especially because of the impressive amount of craters...

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