Monday, July 10, 2006


Refreshed betas for Picasa and Google Earth

The beta versions of Google Earth 4 and Picasa 2.5 have been refreshed.

Picasa moves from build 31.99 to 32.01, though its unclear what fixes have gone into this.

Google Earth moves from build 1565 to 1657 on the PC, (1658 for Mac, 1660 for Linux), and the changes are listed on the release notes that is installed with it, and available via the Help menu. Google Earth Blog has a post summarizing the changes.


Saturday, July 08, 2006


Distorted images on Geoportail

Now that the French mapping site Geoportail is finally available, I've had a chance to have a quick look round.

As you zoom in, the images show one version of the data (I'm assuming a browser scaled version of the low res data), then replace it with the higher res data. In many places that I looked at, the two images do not line up - leading to a strange image shift on switching between the two.

I wasn't sure what was causing this, but wondered if it was something to do with the images being warped over a 3d terrain model. However, the net effect is simply one of image distortion - if it is a terrain effect, then their model has bad data.

The example image below shows the runway at St Martin in the Caribbean - where as you might expect, a runway is straight, flat, (and in this case at sea level, which should mean no terrain height problems). It's a spectacular runway at the best of times, with landing jumbo jets passing closely overhead of sunbathers on the beach at the end of the runway, but I wouldn't fancy landing on it if it's as uneven as the distorted images on Geoportail suggest!

(I havn't found how you bookmark a particular view using GeoPortail - is it possible?)

St MartinSt MartinHosted on Zooomr