Go on trips with Google Earth

Go on trips with Google Earth

Anyone who has a globe in front of them knows the fascination that emanates from it. You have the feeling of holding the whole world in your hands, being able to move it freely and getting a unique overview: Where is which country, which rivers flow through America and which mountains stretch between Asia and Europe? In a similar way, the digital counterpart to the home globe is fascinating: Google Earth.

If you open Google Earth as an app on your tablet or smartphone , you will see a digital globe directly. With swiping and dragging movements you can rotate the globe and enlarge areas. You get the impression of actually moving a globe with your hands. However, it quickly becomes clear that the digital version has much more to offer.

Satellite images from around the world

If you move the middle and index fingers apart on the globe at the same time, the area between them increases. From the large view of the globe, you get step by step to satellite images from all regions of the world. Country boundaries and names are clearly visible, mountains and rivers are emerging and the topography is also visible. The more a region is enlarged, the more details can be seen. You get the feeling of sitting in an airplane and looking at the landscape from a height of 10,000 meters. The big difference: cities are labeled, rivers are named and landscapes such as forests, deserts and mountains are marked. The information is varied, but not confusing. For example, the closer you get to a city, the more details like streets, Parks, playgrounds and public facilities become visible. If you click on it with your finger, information is displayed – sometimes in great detail with explanations and photos. If you enlarge the view with your fingers, the perspective changes: You are no longer a distant observer in an airplane, but rather a bird that, still at a great height, can fly here and there and observe.

Tidy up the terrace again and redesign the garden

If you tap on the button labeled “3D” on the left edge of the application, the view changes again: from a two-dimensional to a three-dimensional representation. If you look at houses, for example, they grow taller and gain in contour and structure; Balconies can be seen, cars are in the streets and trees soar into the sky. If you look around your own house, you will realize that it might be time to clean up the terrace and cut the hedges. In any case, there is no lack of details in this view.

Stroll through the streets of Paris

The “Street View” function goes one step further, in the truest sense of the word. It is activated by touching the little man on the left edge. As a result, areas are colored light blue. Anyone who now approaches such a colored region and then taps a street, for example, will be surprised with a new view. The more graphical representation changes into a 360 ° panorama photo, on which you can simply look around with a swipe in any direction. The amount of detail is amazing: people with shopping bags on the sidewalks, guests in a café reading a newspaper while smoking, and vehicles turning off with their indicators switched on in front of red lights. In the lower third of the picture you can see two arrows. If you tap on it, you can move back and forth in the streets and simply turn off at intersections. At least optically, this comes very close to a walk in the streets of Paris.

The “Google Street View” function built into applications such as Google Maps and Google Earth has largely been adopted by Google cars and bicycles. To do this, the vehicles, equipped with a 360 ° panorama camera and laser measuring devices, drive through many cities and regions around the world, creating a photographic image of the locations. These recordings are not undisputed under data protection law. At its core, the problem revolves around taking pictures of people, houses and streets, connected with the question: what can be shown and what is not allowed. Also under heavy criticism: The vehicles of the Google group record WLAN networks with the aim of improving the location function in applications on mobile devices. More about the controversy about data protection at Google Street View can be found on, for example Wikipedia .

Further functions and possibilities

In addition to the functions described, Google Earth offers some other special features. For example, photos of other users can be viewed at certain locations. In addition, the Voyager function (steering wheel symbol top left) can be used to view specially edited content, such as the national parks of the USA, roof gardens around the world or the locations of well-known films. The contents of this area are also regularly updated and supplemented.


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