google earth

Spent a while downloading and then zooming around Google Earth. It’s pretty amazing—seeing places I know from above.

But I wonder how old the data is? I know some of it has to be more than two years out of date since the house I grew up in still shows a big elm tree in front—but the tree came down maybe ten years ago. Seeing my sister’s house in Natick, MA was cool—but I can’t see ours since Fairfield County is this green blob—no buildings are visible. I wonder why. It’s pretty disappointing not to be able to discern our house in the blob. I can see the houses of most of my relatives, but not my house or my parents’ house.

This is my sister’s house in Natick, MA. See how clearly you can see the house! [click to enlarge]

And this is the view of our house in Norwalk. A green blob. You can’t even see the school next door, which is a fairly large building. [click to enlarge]

The other weird thing is some of the data is wrong. The house I grew up in, in Southgate, MI (now the mall capitol of southeastern Michigan), is shown two doors up from where it actually is (the target is over the wrong house—the Franklins lived there when I was growing up!) My youngest sister’s house, in Dearborn Heights, MI, looks wrong. She lives in a small house, with a small garage behind it but the image shows some big buildings there. I forget what her cross street is—will have to ask her to see if it’s even showing the correct corner lot.

So, an interesting start, but disappointing (and useless for seeing where you need to go) for those of us who live in Blob Land. Google directions, the last time I checked (like two months ago) leave a LOT to be desired (like accuracy), at least here in Fairfield County, so maybe when they update the imagery they’ll also update the directions. Or vice versa. When it’s working properly, I’ll start thinking about integrating it into the websites we manage, at least the ones with storefronts.

But it is so FUN to fly over the country!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 12/20/05 at 02:37 PM
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