Archive for the ‘KML’ Category

Edit your MyMap container

Saturday, August 9th, 2008

Small update to the My Maps support in GoKML, announced a few days ago; you can now edit the links contained in the file. Just goto your secret admin page, generated for your link.

People viewing your file in Google Maps will see the update soon, Google Maps caches it for a while.

People viewing in Google Earth however will not, as they downloaded a static file, which brings onto another point, if want them to auto update as well, could create a network link to your Container, using the standard GoKML form, (enter the url your container and choose appriate refresh period).

My Maps Container

Wednesday, August 6th, 2008

When using the Google’s My Maps feature you can display multiple maps at once simply by ticking the boxes, however the ‘Link to this Map’ will only ever include 1 map, so you can’t easily send a group of maps to someone.

… So a new script – this time under the gokml.net banner – for creating a ‘container’ KML that simply opens a bunch of maps at once – this KML is openabe in Google Earth, but also you can share the link so others can see your batch of My Maps at once in Google Maps.

Create a KML container for a group of My Maps


As a total aside I notice My Maps, now sport a (Geo)RSS feed :)

Google Earth 4.3: Magnetic Compass

Friday, August 1st, 2008

A while ago released a Compass Overlay, which (hopefully) makes reading directions of the navigation control easier. Well this new version does the same, but its (mostly) correct for the Magnetic Direction!

Magnetic Compass correct link this time!!

Note: its positioned to fit the navigation control of Google Earth 4.3, not the separate compass, which has only recently begun working for me… Updates a few seconds after stopping moving.

Now have a way to determine the magnetic variation at a location have some other ideas for using this in Google Earth, eg magnetic bearing along a line, but this is a starting point. For example in the uk the variation is often too small to be really seen on the tiny control.

Thanks to heywhatsthat.com for the pointer to a webservice that gives the variation.

Update: Rather embarrassingly just noticed the link above was wrong! It was to a static compass. The link above has been updated, and it should now rotate! Sorry for confusion… (always wondered why this didnt get much traffic!)

Google Earth: Chart Plotter

Sunday, July 27th, 2008

Did someone mention a chart plotter? If so have a look-see:

Google Earth: Map Plotter

Its hot off the presses so don’t know what options it will need yet, just used three example zooms levels – other options would include the mobile map style. (You can change it by altering the link in Properties)

Also its standard Google Maps, as that is all the API offers. Ideally would be proper flight plan data, but would need a Static Map API to work.

Note: The map is centered on the camera position (so is ideal for the Flight Simulator) – and while it can be used in other modes it wont make much sense. If interest could make one that shows the center of the view itself.

Disclaimer: this is entering the gray area of what is possible with the Static Maps API, so might get pulled, etc.

More flight sim tools

Google Earth: Flight Simulator GPS Arrow

Saturday, July 26th, 2008

Behold a new network link from nearby.org.uk:

Google Earth GPS

Once you have chosen a destination point, a small arrow will be shown in the bottom right of your Google Earth window, which points towards your destination! Ideal for use in the flight simulator, where you can play follow the arrow.

Note it only updates every 5 seconds, and comes with all sorts of disclaimers such as don’t use in life or death situations.

Letting your KML loose

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

I think I have mentioned this before, but have a page that helps share your KML file via various Google services.

Following a post on the Maps help group, realised could update it with some other ways to use the KML (even non Google!)

So view the latest page at

Publishing your KML for Google Earth, Google Maps and Beyond

suggestions for other links welcome in the comments!

Google Earth – the API

Friday, May 30th, 2008

I’ve been following the blogosphere re the recent introduction of the Google Earth API. Which is a slightly lightweight version of Google Earth packaged in a browser, but with a quite rich Javascript/KML hybrid scripting interface.

There has (IMHO) been some misconceptions about exactly what this is, the hype (and I partly fell into the same trap) seems to surround its bringing Google Earth (aka 3D) to the browser – which it certainly does, but as Ed Parsons notes:
“in that context it should become clear that the big announcement of the Google Earth plug-in, is more about adding a API to earth, than bringing 3D functionality to the browser.”
its not the biggest thing – its that it opens Google Earth to scripting!

And being browser based brings reasonably familiar, and cross platform, Javascript to the table, effectively obsoleting the unsupported COM API (and ActionScript?).

As many blogs note 3D in the browser is not that new, LiveMaps (or what ever it called now. virtual earth?) has had it for a while, not to mention WorldWind (java), and the myriad of other 3D globes.

(however the one area this is good on the web, is it allows much larger datasets to be displayed and intereacted with – in already existing Google Maps API mashups – with little work)

Google Earth in the Browser

Wednesday, May 28th, 2008

Google has just announced a new Google Earth API – which allows embedding and fully functional Google Earth in just about any webpage. Even is easily intergratable with Google Maps API mashups – with very little extra code. (takes a number of seconds for that news to sink in!)

Be sure to checkout the samples, (particularly the milktruck demo!), I’ve also started trying it out with a few demos of my own

…Windows only btw…

Expect A LOT MORE from this very flexible looking API – the JS interface can quickly interact with objects (API is based around KML) and gets pretty good control of interface options.

Update: mentioned on gearthblog.com which is a good introduction about what this is and what its not!

Update2: and to show it can basically be added to a ‘real world’ Gmaps mashup, in a few lines of code, see here

HowTo: Copy/Move features between My Maps (GoogleMaps)

Friday, May 23rd, 2008

Google Maps doesn’t include a method to copy/move features between maps, however as you can import and export features using KML files you can easily use these features to archive the job.

I’ve moved the meat of this post to a Thread on the Google Maps Group – better for Google to be hosting it.

Howto: Alternative to paging on MyMaps (GoogleMaps)

Friday, May 23rd, 2008

==========================

Update, 2nd August 2008

Suddenly it seems that the KML export from My Maps no longer pages like it used to, so this process is now a lot quicker!

Just use the link ‘View in Google Earth’, and paste it directly in the search box to get access to the geographical culling method. No more going and creating a kml file or any sillyness.

==========================

Introduction

In order to keep the map working at reasonable speed Google Maps needs to limit the available features visible at once, quite simply the more features shown the slower the map gets.

For MyMaps the features are split into pages, so that a reasonable amount of data is shown on one page – effectivly enough that will work at a reasonable speed. This normally results in between 60-200 features at once, but sometimes that is not enough.

However Google Maps uses a different limited method when displaying KML files, a regional geographical culling based method. A certain number of features are shown, to give a reasonable overview, but then as you zoom in more features become visible. This often results in more results being visible, but importantly doesn’t impose the arbitrary pages, so its often more friendly on the user, as can just zoom in on an area rather than flick though pages to find their area.

I’ve moved the meat of this post to a thread on the Google Maps Group – let Google host it!