Monday, June 12, 2006

Google Earth's Birthday

Today is Google Earth's first birthday. Google Earth is the fine virtual globe program downloadable free from Google that has sent shivers to dictators and military men everywhere for its hi-res imagery of the earth's surface. I once used the software to locate the airfield of the famed Area 51 in Nevada, and a site even sponsors a contest to locate black helicopters (ostensibly the ones used in covert ops). The same site even reported that al Qaeda uses the software to stalk its targets.

With the new version, Google Earth 4, the software now runs on OS X and Linux, aside from its Windows flavor. Resolution was also improved, from 15 meters per pixel to 70 cm/pixel (some countries can be viewed at an amazing 10 cm per pixel). At this resolution you can well see Kim Jong Il's rump as he moons SoKor troops over the DMZ.

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