"As I said in a posting a month or so ago, several other companies have already demonstrated automated 3D modelling of complete cities. Google will be left behind in the dust if it continues with manual modelling.
I suspect this is the beginning of the end for our hobby. I expect they will release automated models for numerous complete cities in the near future. Then they won’t need Sketchup (or us) any more.
Oh well, it was fun while it lasted."
Craig, are you able to tell us whether Google intends to publish the rollout schedule of cities to Earth and Maps desktop please? I was working on a major modelling project (Cockatoo Island in SYdney Harbour). Clearly no point in continuing if Sydney will be replaced in the near future.
Another question. Will it be possible to turn off the 3D buildings mesh and turn on either all or individual Sketchup models, or are they now effectively dead and buried?
I must be using maps wrong. First of all, I never use Google earth on my Nexus one. In fact. I un-installed it to make some room. When I am out and about I use Google maps a lot. Mostly for turn by turn navigation but also to orient what I am on foot. The reason a flat map works on a mobile phone is because the interaction is easy and I am only interested in where am I and how do I get there. Sometimes I search for a business but that is rare.Having 3D landscape and city data available is great if I want to see a location in context. This is more when I want to know something about a location for holiday, accommodation, real-estate etc. I don't tend to do that on my mobile phone but on my large screen desktop. But this is of course only my perspective on it all.I suspect the real reason this new data is rolled out to mobile first is because there is little legacy. Mixing the old 3D building data with the new data is probably undesirable and therefore desktop won't be rolled out until enough of the new data is available. I am guessing the Google Earth code base is about to be scrapped as Google transitions to a 3D enabled maps on the browser using Web-GL
I would like to know how much of the Google Earth API will be retained. I suspect the First person view possible in Google Earth will no longer be available due to technical and resolution limitations. As a Google Earth developer it would be great to hear more about this.
I feel sorry for you in particular Paul. You obviously have a lot more time and energy invested in the current Earth and Maps than many.
This is a treason to the 3d community after all the hard work we have put in Google earth this is really unfair. I really do not feel like keep modelling after reading your post
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Maps API TOS https://developers.google.com/maps/terms
4.4 Changes to the Service; Deprecation Policy.
Google will announce if we intend to discontinue or make backwards incompatible changes to this API or Service. We will use commercially reasonable efforts to continue to operate the Service or the applicable APIs without these changes until the later of: (i) one year after the announcement or (ii) April 20, 2015, unless (as Google determines in its reasonable good faith judgment):
-Can you explain what 'informed' for 3D maps mean?
-Will there be a way to develop or submit 'better models' or obliques than the LIDAR generated models in the presentation? What's the process? Is UGC dead except for photos?
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Today, we provided a preview of some changes that are coming to the 3D landscape in Google Earth, starting on mobile devices. Later this summer, we’ll unveil a new way of displaying 3D buildings on Google Earth for mobile, achieved by building complete cityscapes from the 45-degree aerial imagery used in Google Maps and Building Maker.
Living in a small college town, I am pretty sure I can assume that our models won't be replaced anytime soon. Maybe this is some good news for the geo-modeler community: if you concentrate on less-populated areas, then the chances that Google will replace your models with auto generated data is very slim. It is likely too cost prohibitive for them to fly over those areas. Having said that, it might be useful for Google to announce a population cutoff below which you guys will not cover cities - that would give modeled some certainty.
Another idea is to have a "geo-modeler" layer next to the new 3d buildings layer in GE. This could then feature user-generated content and could be turned on by the user, if desired. You could even implement it in a way where - when turned on - the new building mesh is not displayed where user-generated models exist. That should be easy to implement using bounding-box cropping.