Oceans added to Google Earth

2009-02-02

in Geek stuff, Internet matters, Science, The environment

Google’s decision to add seabed data to Google Earth is welcome. It is now conventional wisdom to argue that humanity knows less about the open oceans than we do about many of the stellar bodies in the solar system. That being said, given the level of pressure humanity is placing upon the oceans, coupled with the vital role they play in the planet’s biological functioning, gaining an appreciation for the nature and importance of the oceans is a critical medium-term undertaking for humanity.

One decidedly welcome thing about my new computer is that it has the processing and graphics power to make the Google Earth flight simulator smooth and visually compelling. It is neat to do something similar with the Mariana Trench.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Milan February 2, 2009 at 6:32 pm

The Australia / New Zealand region certainly looks different when you add in undersea topography.

Milan February 2, 2009 at 6:41 pm

Curiously enough, the F16 does work underwater.

. February 2, 2009 at 7:20 pm

Hands on: Google Earth 5.0 goes under the sea, back in time

Google has unveiled a major upgrade to Google Earth, its 3D earth visualization and education product. New features allow users to explore under the surface of the ocean, look back through time, and even visit Mars, so we had to take it for a spin.

By David Chartier | Last updated February 2, 2009 5:20

R.K. February 3, 2009 at 5:16 pm

As it appears now, the undersea view is pretty gloomy and colourless.

It’s not too clear how Google could improve that. They aren’t going to get comprehensive full-colour images of the seafloor any time soon.

. March 2, 2009 at 10:58 pm

Vulcan minds meld with Google

Lucky American readers can now get an instant carbon-guilt trip, all courtesy of Google and NASA.

Researchers at Purdue University in Indiana, with funding from NASA, have shoehorned a wealth of data on carbon dioxide emissions into the interactive globe tool that is Google Earth. It’s a timely move, given that the Environmental Protection Agency seems to be preparing to regulate carbon dioxide for the first time (NY Times) and NASA is about to launch its Orbiting Carbon Observatory (Nature Reports Climate Change).

The data for this new addition to Google Earth comes from the Vulcan system which graced this blog last year (see: ‘Vulcan’ shows carbon dioxide’s death-grip – April 08, 2008).

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