Tag Archives: Maps

Get lost in the new Earth Timelapse, now on mobile

Today we’re introducing several updates to Google Earth Timelapse, a global, zoomable time-lapse video that lets anyone explore the last 35 years of our changing planet’s surface—from the global scale to the local scale. This update adds two additional years of imagery to the time-series visualization, now spanning from 1984 to 2018, along with mobile support and visual upgrades to make exploring more accessible and intuitive.

Desktop and Mobile

Timelapse provides a comprehensive picture of our changing Earth—including stunning phenomena like the sprouting of Dubai’s Palm Islands, the retreat of Alaska’s Columbia Glacier and the impressive urban expansion of Las Vegas, Nevada (seen below).

Scientists, documentarians and journalists have used this dataset to help us better understand the complex dynamics at work on our planet. News outlets have brought their reporting to life with Timelapse imagery, from coverage of the floods in Houston, Texas to population monitoring. Recently, a team of scientists at the University of Ottawa published an article Nature based on the Timelapse dataset which revealed a 6,000 percent increase in landslides on a Canadian Arctic island since 1984. Starting this week, if you’re in the U.K., you can see Timelapse imagery featured in Earth From Space, a new BBC series about the incredible discoveries and perspectives captured from above. 

Zeit

Zeit Online uses Timelapse to show the extent to which jungles are cleared for soy production in Brazil.

Using Google Earth Engine, Google's cloud platform for petabyte-scale geospatial analysis, we combined more than 15 million satellite images (roughly 10 quadrillion pixels) to create the 35 global cloud-free images that make up Timelapse. These images come from the U.S. Geological Survey/NASA Landsat and European Sentinel programs. Once again, we joined forces with our friends at Carnegie Mellon’s CREATE Lab, whose Time Machine video technology makes Timelapse interactively explorable.

Today's update also adds mobile and tablet support, making it a little easier for you to explore, research or get lost in the imagery—from wherever you are. Up until recently, mobile browsers disabled the ability to autoplay videos, which is critical for Timelapse (since it’s made up of tens of millions of multi-resolution, overlapping videos). Chrome and Firefox reinstated support for autoplay (with sound muted), so we’ve added mobile support with this latest update.

Timelapse Phone

Earth Timelapse, now available on phones and tablets, includes a handy new "Maps Mode" toggle to let you navigate the map using Google Maps.

The design of the new Timelapse interface leverages Material Design with simple, clean lines and clear focal areas, so you can easily navigate the immense dataset. We contributed this new user interface to the open-source Time Machine project, used by Carnegie Mellon and others. Read more about our design approach at Google Design.

We’re committed to creating products like Timelapse with the planet in mind, and hope that making this data easily accessible will ground debates, encourage discovery, and inform the global community’s thinking about how we live on our planet. Get started with Timelapse on the Earth Engine website, or take a mesmerizing tour of the world through YouTube.


Finding a place to charge your EV is easy with Google Maps

If you’ve ever driven to an electric vehicle (EV) charging station only to find that all ports are occupied, you know that you could end up waiting in line for anywhere between minutes to hours—which can really put a damper on your day when you have places to go and things to do.


Starting today, you can see the real time availability of charging ports in the U.S. and U.K, right from Google Maps–so you can know if chargers are available before you head to a station. Simply search for “ev charging stations” to see up to date information from networks like Chargemaster, EVgo, SemaConnect and soon, Chargepoint. You’ll then see how many ports are currently available, along with other helpful details, like the business where the station is located, port types and charging speeds. You’ll also see information about the station from other drivers, including photos, ratings, reviews and questions.
realtime

You can search for real time EV charging information on Google Maps on desktop, Android, iOS and on Google Maps for Android Auto. To get started, update your Google Maps app from the App Store or Play Store.


Take a walk through Kakadu on Google Street View

In Australia’s Top End, you will find the country’s largest national park: Kakadu National Park. Covering almost 20,000 square kilometers (about half the size of Switzerland) and with terrain encompassing wetlands, rivers and sandstone escarpments, it’s home to the world’s oldest living culture with more than a dozen Indigenous groups. One-third of Australia’s bird species, an estimated 10,000 crocodiles and approximately 2,000 plant species can also be found in the Park.


Today, on its 40th anniversary, we're inviting people across the world to visit Kakadu National Park on Google Street View—to walk through ancient “stone country”, stare at spectacular waterfalls and discover ancient rock art.
Street View Trekker at Nawurlandja

Google Street View Trekker taking in the panoramas at Nawurlandja. 

Considered a living cultural landscape, Kakadu National Park’s geological history spans more than two billion years. The Park is a place that boasts extraordinary archaeological sites that record the skills and ways of life of the region’s Aboriginal people, whose culture stretches back more than 65,000 years. The Street View journey captures a glimpse of this world, uncovering rock art galleries and stunning vistas across eight sites.

Anja Toms from Kakadu National Park

Anja Toms from Kakadu National Park explains the significance of rock art at Burrungkuy (Nourlangie).

Viewers can journey to Ubirr for incredible 360-degree views, or to take a look at rock art galleries that record animal life in the region going back thousands of years. This includes a painting of a thylacine—or Tasmanian Tiger—depicted before they became extinct on the mainland around 2,000 years ago.

Kakadu National Park Rangers

Sean Nadji and Fred Hunter, Kakadu National Park Rangers, look out over Ubirr.

You can also meander through towering sandstone pillars at Bardedjilidji, travel to Nawurlandja for world-class panoramas across Anbangbang Billabong and the Arnhem Land escarpment, and toward Burrungkuy (Nourlangie) where you can view rock art galleries, before cooling off in the pristine plunge pools at Maguk or Gunlom (one of the most popular sites for travellers looking to take a refreshing dip), then diving into Kakadu’s big waterfalls: Twin Falls and Jim Jim Falls.

This journey through Kakadu National Park is a continuation of our work with Traditional Owners, Tourism Northern Territory and Parks Australia to record and share sacred sites, and instill greater value and respect for the land—which began in 2017 with Uluṟu-Kata Tjuṯa National Park.

Visit Kakadu National Park, dual-listed by UNESCO World Heritage for both its natural and cultural significance, on Google Street View to learn more about the world’s oldest living culture and their connection with the land.


Source: Google LatLong


Take a walk through Kakadu on Google Street View

In Australia’s Top End, you will find the country’s largest national park: Kakadu National Park. Covering almost 20,000 square kilometers (about half the size of Switzerland) and with terrain encompassing wetlands, rivers and sandstone escarpments, it’s home to the world’s oldest living culture with more than a dozen Indigenous groups. One-third of Australia’s bird species, an estimated 10,000 crocodiles and approximately 2,000 plant species can also be found in the Park.


Today, on its 40th anniversary, we're inviting people across the world to visit Kakadu National Park on Google Street View—to walk through ancient “stone country”, stare at spectacular waterfalls and discover ancient rock art.
Street View Trekker at Nawurlandja

Google Street View Trekker taking in the panoramas at Nawurlandja. 

Considered a living cultural landscape, Kakadu National Park’s geological history spans more than two billion years. The Park is a place that boasts extraordinary archaeological sites that record the skills and ways of life of the region’s Aboriginal people, whose culture stretches back more than 65,000 years. The Street View journey captures a glimpse of this world, uncovering rock art galleries and stunning vistas across eight sites.

Anja Toms from Kakadu National Park

Anja Toms from Kakadu National Park explains the significance of rock art at Burrungkuy (Nourlangie).

Viewers can journey to Ubirr for incredible 360-degree views, or to take a look at rock art galleries that record animal life in the region going back thousands of years. This includes a painting of a thylacine—or Tasmanian Tiger—depicted before they became extinct on the mainland around 2,000 years ago.

Kakadu National Park Rangers

Sean Nadji and Fred Hunter, Kakadu National Park Rangers, look out over Ubirr.

You can also meander through towering sandstone pillars at Bardedjilidji, travel to Nawurlandja for world-class panoramas across Anbangbang Billabong and the Arnhem Land escarpment, and toward Burrungkuy (Nourlangie) where you can view rock art galleries, before cooling off in the pristine plunge pools at Maguk or Gunlom (one of the most popular sites for travellers looking to take a refreshing dip), then diving into Kakadu’s big waterfalls: Twin Falls and Jim Jim Falls.

This journey through Kakadu National Park is a continuation of our work with Traditional Owners, Tourism Northern Territory and Parks Australia to record and share sacred sites, and instill greater value and respect for the land—which began in 2017 with Uluṟu-Kata Tjuṯa National Park.

Visit Kakadu National Park, dual-listed by UNESCO World Heritage for both its natural and cultural significance, on Google Street View to learn more about the world’s oldest living culture and their connection with the land.


Source: Google LatLong


Sssnakes on a map

Google Maps shows you how to get around on foot, car, train and bicycle, and now, you can ssslither to your destination too. Starting today, you can play a twist on the snake game in different locations across the world—including Cairo, London, San Francisco, São Paulo, Sydney and Tokyo–right from Google Maps. To start playing, simply open the Google Maps app, tap on the menu icon on the top left corner, then select "Play Snake" to get your daily dose of 90s nostalgia (boy bands, fanny packs and slap bracelets not included).



snake gif

Once you’ve selected a city, start picking up as many passengers as you can as your train travels around the world—stopping everywhere from Big Ben, the Great Sphinx of Giza to the Eiffel Tower. But make sure you don’t run off the map (or into yourself)!


Snake on Google Maps starts rolling out worldwide on Android and iOS today, and will be live in the app for about a week. Anticipating a snake addiction? Us, too. Head over to our standalone site to keep playing, long after April Foolsss is over.

Four tools to help drive your nonprofit’s mission forward

Google for Nonprofits started as a conversation about a volunteer program in an elevator in our New York office in 2010. Today, Google for Nonprofits has connected more than 200,000 nonprofits around the globe with Google products to help them run their organizations.

We believe that technology can do good in the world, which is why we offer eligible organizations access to a suite of Google products at no cost. Here’s a look at what each of the Google for Nonprofits products has to offer:

Bring teams together with G Suite for Nonprofits

G Suite is a set of integrated apps, including Gmail, Docs, Calendar, Drive and Hangouts Meet. It helps organizations with productivity, collaboration, and security—with G Suite, teammates can work from anywhere, on any device and focus their time on making an impact. If your nonprofit works across different locations, you can use G Suite to organize online video conferences on Hangouts, create group chats, work together simultaneously on the same document and much more.

Team Rubicon UK is a disaster response organization that needs to be prepared for and quickly respond to crises around the world. Using Google Forms and Sheets, Team Rubicon can go from 1,000 potential volunteers to a group of 12 skilled volunteers on the ground supporting a crisis within 24 hours.

Reach more supporters with Google Ad Grants

Google Ad Grants connects people to causes with $10,000 per month in free Google Advertising. Nonprofits can create ads to raise awareness, attract donors and help people around the world.

American Humane, the first national humane group in the U.S., uses Ad Grants to increase the organization's exposure and educate people on their work in the animal welfare space. In one year, Google Ads drove over 1,000 new people to donate or sign up to volunteer and over 600 people to complete a service dog application.

Show your nonprofit’s impact with Google Maps & Earth

Google’s mapping tools help nonprofits in a wide range of ways, from tracking and sharing an organization’s impact to taking supporters on a virtual tour. To help organizations get started, Google for Nonprofits provides Google Maps Platform credits to nonprofits.  

iNaturalist, part of the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, uses Google Maps Platform to encourage environmental stewardship. It uses crowdsourcing, maps and photo sharing to gather data that helps conversationalist save a species before it becomes extinct. iNaturalist has succeeded in its goal of getting hundreds of thousands of people to connect with the natural world and continues to help scientists discover crucial findings about species.

Engage your supporters using video with the YouTube Nonprofits Program

YouTube amplifies your nonprofit’s reach by telling your story to a global audience.  Through the YouTube Nonprofit program, you’ll get access to Link Anywhere Cards that direct your viewers to your external campaign landing pages and to Creator Academy lessons tailored to nonprofits. Your nonprofit can also get access to the YouTube Space in Los Angeles or New York to shoot or edit your videos at YouTube’s creator studio. Just visit Space LA or Space NY and click the “Apply Now” button.

KMVT 15 is an award-winning nonprofit television station and media center that provides a community forum, media literacy education, hands-on training and civic engagement to local residents. KMVT 15 used YouTube for Nonprofits to engage its audience at a global scale: their YouTube channel has garnered more than 4.5 million views and seven thousand subscribers with a minimal marketing budget.

We’re inspired every day by the nonprofits across more than 50 countries who use our products to advocate their causes and make a real difference. If you’re interested in how Google’s technology can help your nonprofit, click here tolearn more.

Source: Google LatLong


Down under, over and all around: Sydney in 3D on Google Earth

Google Earth is one of the world's most comprehensive 3D maps available. In addition to global satellite and terrain coverage, over the past several years we've been adding highly detailed 3D imagery of entire cities and towns, from the iconic architecture of cities like New York and Paris to views of landmarks like the Grand Canyon. And now, we’re sharing 3D imagery of central Sydney, Australia!

But 3D imagery of Sydney isn’t the only thing that’s new today. We've made many incremental improvements to our modeling process that, overall, help us achieve an even more precise 3D landscape. (You can check out this video to learn more about the process.) For a while now, parts of Sydney—sites like Sydney Harbour Bridge and Bondi Beach—have already been available in 3D. Expect to see this quality across all of our new Earth imagery.

Central Sydney sits beneath busy airspace, so it’s taken a while to make 3D models of the area. We’ve finally collected enough imagery to build a more complete picture of this iconic city. Explore landmarks like the Sydney Opera House and popular tourist spots Darling Harbour and The Rocks. You can even plan your next visit to Sydney with our guided tour, Explore Sydney.

You can see all the places where we have 3D imagery available in Google Earth.

Source: Google LatLong


Rove around “Mars on Earth” in Street View

Devon Island, a desolate land mass in Canada’s Arctic with a polar climate and treacherous terrain, is the largest uninhabited island on Earth. Yet the factors that make the island unlivable also make it indispensable to the scientists and researchers who work there—its climate and landscape are the closest thing to Mars that can be found on Earth.  

Mars on Earth: A Visit to Devon Island

Now anyone can visit "Mars on Earth" in Street View. Last year, I received a special invite from Dr. Pascal Lee, chairman of the Mars Institute and director of the Haughton-Mars Project, to visit Devon Island and learn about the research done there. We spent three months preparing for the expedition, and after 72 hours on seven flights, found ourselves at basecamp surrounded by an untouched landscape.

Devon Island, much like a future base on Mars, lacks the infrastructure we take for granted. All the supplies needed for camp—food, gasoline, tools and personal supplies—must be brought along on each excursion, and all the waste packed up and brought back to the mainland. At the research base, everyone has their job. Even Dr. Lee’s dog KingKong has a responsibility—he’s there to serve as an advance warning in case a polar bear wanders into camp.


Every morning, before heading out to collect Street View on ATVs, we would brief as a group to make sure everybody knew the plan that day: who was leading, who would ride rear, and who was staying at camp to cook and handle maintenance. This provided a real insight into how humans who will go to Mars will explore the new planet: detailed planning and preparation is key.

Visit Devon Island in Google Earth

Visit Devon Island on Google Earth

Throughout the week, we rode to some of the places of most interest to NASA’s research and exploration: Haughton Crater, an impact crater 20-kilometers in diameter; Astronaut Canyon, similar to many of the V-shaped, winding valleys on Mars; and the ancient lake beds of Breccia Hills. What strikes you most about Devon Island is how vast and desolate everything is. Yet every rock, hill and canyon tells a story. Breccia Hills, for example, is filled with shatter cones, rocks created by meteor impact millions of years ago.

We were also able to capture our experience on a Pixel 3, shooting the first-ever documentary filmed on Pixel to showcase just how majestic, and sometimes trying, training for a Mars Mission on Devon Island can be.


Explore “Mars on Earth” and learn about the work being done there in a new Google Earth guided tour.

How I started traveling the world on my own, thanks to Google

I took my first solo vacation in June 2017, and the experience changed my life. After countless searches of Norway’s beautiful landscapes on Google Images, I decided to make the trip there all by myself. The following year, I took my second solo trip, this time to New Zealand. After that, I knew I didn’t want to wait until my retirement to travel—I wanted to do this full-time. So I decided to quit my job this past June, exactly one year after my first solo trip, to make travel my career. It was one of the best decisions I have ever made.

My post-corporate journey has been nothing short of thrilling. I toured Europe for 58 days, visiting 15 countries while making a living as a social media and branding consultant. Even though the experience has not always been easy (I got my phone stolen in Paris, for one), I’ve kept going, attending conferences and seeing the most scenic islands in the world.

Skydiving in Switzerland

Skydiving in Switzerland.

On my first solo trip, I became a Local Guide on Google Maps, writing reviews of restaurants in Norway from the perspective of a solo female traveler—and one who kept a strict vegetarian diet. Throughout my travels, I continued adding photos and reviews about my experiences and reached Level 8 out of 10 in the Local Guides program. I wrote a post on Local Guides Connect sharing what I learned from various trips, and used the Local Guides Connect forum to ask for suggestions on places to visit.

I even made a ton of friends from the program along the way through, thanks to taking part in conversations on the forum. My fellow Local Guides have helped me check out national parks to visit in Italy and places to visit in Portland, Oregon. And this past October, I was one of 151 Local Guides selected to attend the Connect Live 2018 conference in San Francisco.

Throughout my time as a full-time traveler, and as a Local Guide, I’ve picked up some tips on how to experience the world, even when you’re alone. Here’s my advice on how to plan a successful solo trip, with help from Google.

Vandana New Zealand

Visiting Hobbit houses in New Zealand.

Plan your itinerary wisely.  

Start off by creating a list on Google Maps of all the places you want to visit. Once you have your destination in mind, use the Google Trips app to plan your travel and organize your itinerary. And if you want specific recommendations while you’re there, check out the Local Guides Connect forum.

One of the best parts of my Europe solo trip was meeting a Local Guides Connect moderator, Ermes. I was in Venice and had messaged him the previous day about my travel. In spite of the short notice, he drove down and met me! I got a Local Guide to show me around Venice, and it was so helpful and memorable. If you can’t get a Local Guide to be your personal advisor, try signing up for organized tours. You can relax and enjoy the scenery as a tour guide shares stories of local places, and navigates you through a new city.

Save money wherever you can.

If you use a travel agent, have them get you itineraries, but plan and book the places yourself to save some cash. Use public transportation wherever possible, and try staying at a hostel for a cheaper stay that lets you meet, mingle and share your travel experiences with other visitors. And if you need to apply for a visa, do it yourself, so you have more money for that kayaking trip of yours.

Vandana Paris

Taking in the sights in Paris. 

Stay safe.

Download an area of the city you’re visiting on Google Maps so that it is available offline. That way, you don’t have to worry about finding your way when you don’t have an internet connection. Share your real-time location on Google Maps with someone your trust, like your family or close friends. This way they know where you are. (My parents love this feature.)

Make the most of the daylight by waking up early and visiting places you want to see in the first part of the day. And ask someone at your hotel, hostel or vacation rental whether it is safe to walk in your neighborhood at night, or use public transportation after dark. And use the Google Translate app when you are in a foreign country and don’t understand the language.

Keep an eye on what’s next.

The most rewarding part of solo travel is the luxury of designing your own itinerary and seeing your travel plans come to life. For me, the next place I hope to visit is Banff, Canada, and I’ll bring my knowledge as a solo traveler (and Local Guide) along for the ride.

Now in more cities: Lime bikes and scooters on Google Maps

Starting this week, you can see nearby Lime scooters, pedal bikes and e-bikes right from the transit tab on Google Maps in over 80 new cities around the world. When you need to travel short distances or that last mile, Google Maps can tell you if a Lime vehicle is available, how long it’ll take to walk to the vehicle, an estimate of how much your ride could cost, along with your total journey time and ETA.

lime product

Lime scooters and bikes on Google Maps are now available on Android and iOS in the following cities globally—with more coming soon:


U.S.:

Arizona (Mesa, Scottsdale), Arkansas (Little Rock), California (Monterey, Mountain View, San Marcos, Santa Barbara), Colorado (Denver), Florida (Miami, Orlando), Georgia (Atlanta, Statesboro), Idaho (Boise), Indiana (Bloomington, South Bend), Kentucky (Louisville), Massachusetts (Arlington, Bedford, Belmont, Chelsea, Everett, Malden, Medford, Melrose, Milton, Needham, Newton, Revere, Waltham, Watertown, Winthrop), Michigan (Lansing), Nevada (Reno), Missouri (St. Louis), New Jersey (Keyport, Metuchen, Plainsfield), New York (Ithaca, Queens, Rockaways), North Carolina (Charlotte, Charlottesville, Greensboro, Greenville, Jacksonville, Raleigh/Durham), Ohio (Columbus, Oxford), Oklahoma (Oklahoma City, Tulsa), Rhode Island (Providence), Tennessee (Memphis, Nashville), Texas (Corpus Christi, Lubbock), Utah (Salt Lake City), Virginia (Harrisonburg), Washington (Tacoma), Washington DC.


International:

Brussels, Calgary, ChristChurch, London, Lyon, Madrid, Malaga, Malmö, Marseille, Mexico City, Milton Keynes, Oxford, Pamplona, Paris, Poznan, Stockholm, Sydney, Tel Aviv, Vienna, Warsaw, Wellington, Wroclaw, Zaragoza


The next time you need to get around town, check out Lime—right from Google Maps.