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3D Helicopter View Added To Google Maps

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the merging-the-flight-sims-and-directions dept.

Google 53

Zothecula writes "Those not content with getting a 2D top-down or 360-degree street level view of a planned route using Google Maps can now enjoy a virtual flight over the route thanks to Google adding a new Helicopter View. The new feature, which currently only works in a full browser and requires the Google Earth plugin, lets users see 3D view, and should come in particularly handy for walkers or bike riders looking for a more intuitive view of potentially tiring hills."

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53 comments

Not that new. (3, Insightful)

The_mad_linguist (1019680) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595376)

Google Earth has had a flight simulator built in for years now. The difference between normal google Earth, a F-16 in Google Earth and a helicopter in Google Earth isn't that noteworthy.

Re:Not that new. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595590)

The flight simulator just lets you fly wherever you want. Helicopter View follows a pre-determined route.

Re:Not that new. (2)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 2 years ago | (#37597962)

I don't think you understand what helicopter view is.

Re:Not that new. (2)

rwa2 (4391) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598002)

Not that I've tried this "new" helicopter view, but Google Earth had that kind of navigation track animation since the Keyhole days. I think the only news is that they've tied that feature into maps.google.com using a plugin.

Re:Not that new. / Keyhole (1)

Ozmodium (1395791) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599710)

Agreed. I used this very thing in keyhole to demo the agenda we had for a gathering a long time ago. It was cool to allow people to see what parts of the city we were going to. Flying up and around allowed them to see that.

Re:Not that new. (1)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 2 years ago | (#37600896)

This view is actually a lot better than the old path-following, which wasn't sufficiently damped for routes involving a lot of right-angle turns (the camera would swing nauseatingly) that you tend to get with road directions. It's a tool for a specific purpose (an overview fly-by of your route). Regardless, it's not a flight sim.

How about Minuteman Missile view? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595444)

I want to see what an ICBM would see while closing in on Tehran.

Re:How about Minuteman Missile view? (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595524)

From the official Google blog:

...-- Paul (Pin Ling) Yang, Google Maps engineer

I believe the Chinese spies planted in Google are fixin to do the same to the California coastline, which happens to be the example cited in the blog. You'd better be fixin' to move to Tehran, because that's the only place you'll be able to...the Chinese already own your money and your largest search engine* - it's only a matter of time until they own your land.

* The infamous China Google "hacks" happened right around the same time Google notoriously refused to release employee statistics, especially with respect to nationality. Care to guess why?

Better yet, the Kaaba!!!! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595824)

You know damn well you want to see that one.

3D view (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595446)

great,3 D view
http://www.infashion2011.com

Now it needs some 'simulation' (1)

Hsien-Ko (1090623) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595464)

so I can drop buckets of water on fire with a nice jerry martin 11khz WAV soundtrack, land my chopper and walk my spazzy pilot across the earth.

Re:Now it needs some 'simulation' (1)

darthdavid (835069) | more than 2 years ago | (#37597010)

I see I wasn't the only one thinking of Sim Copter...

Re:Now it needs some 'simulation' (1)

ewanm89 (1052822) | more than 2 years ago | (#37597300)

Or a bit of Wagner's Ring Cycle.

Modern Man (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595490)

Heaven forbid that you would get tired.

Re:Modern Man (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595748)

If God had meant for men to climb hills, He wouldn't have invented escalators.

Re:Modern Man (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37596058)

Heaven forbid modern man learn to read the topo view of google maps.

Re:Modern Man (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598598)

Heaven forbid modern man learn to read the topo view of google maps.

Google maps has a topo view? Since when? And more importantly How do you access it? You're not thinking of terrain view are you?

Full browser? (1)

Bogtha (906264) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595506)

currently only works in a full browser and requires the Google Earth plugin

Any ideas on what this means? I read both articles, but they didn't seem to mention what this "full browser" requirement is.

Re:Full browser? (1)

dicobalt (1536225) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595542)

Clearly a full browser is a browser that is full as opposed to one that is only partially full.

Re:Full browser? (1)

smitty97 (995791) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595562)

I'm a pessimist, you insensitive clod! A full browser is completely devoid of empty.

Re:Full browser? (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598608)

I don't think of it as partially full. I think of it as full, but with a safety margin in case of overfilling.

Re:Full browser? (1)

gregrah (1605707) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595556)

Just guessing, but maybe by full they mean "not a mobile browser"?

Re:Full browser? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595580)

You keep opening tabs and websites until your computer gives an out of memory error.

Re:Full browser? (2)

Cyko_01 (1092499) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595594)

Here are the results of my own testing:

Works In:
firefox 7
google chrome
IE8

Does Not Work In:
safari 5.1 (windows)
Opera 11.51

Re:Full browser? (3, Funny)

Cyko_01 (1092499) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595616)

Netscape navigator 9.0.0.6 (I have it installed just for laughs) shows the 3D button but the plugin shows some errors and crashes the browser if you try it anyways.

Re:Full browser? (0)

syousef (465911) | more than 2 years ago | (#37596200)

Netscape navigator 9.0.0.6 (I have it installed just for laughs) shows the 3D button but the plugin shows some errors and crashes the browser if you try it anyways.

You're on the wrong site. Saddism is over there....oh wait...whaaa?

Re:Full browser? (1)

Thrashing Rage (157543) | more than 2 years ago | (#37597482)

Netscape navigator 9.0.0.6 (I have it installed just for laughs) shows the 3D button but the plugin shows some errors and crashes the browser if you try it anyways.

You're on the wrong site. Saddism is over there....oh wait...whaaa?

And i thought i was the only one that did that, got Mosiac and Lynx too? Been going thru stuff and got a couple of the last netscape (whatever) was last version.

But back on topic this really reminds me of Choplifter and Rescue Raiders :P

Re:Full browser? (1)

Cyko_01 (1092499) | more than 2 years ago | (#37597628)

Netscape is actually a surprisingly capable browser! It actually scores better on acid3 then firefox 2.0.0.12, opera 9.26 and most surprisingly IE7 or IE8, with a score of 58/100

Re:Full browser? (1)

OzPeter (195038) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595862)

Doesn't seem to work on Safari 5.1 (Snow Leopard) either.

Re:Full browser? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37597730)

works fine for me on Safari 5.1 snow leaopard - you sure you have the plugin?

Re:Full browser? (1)

mobets (101759) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595940)

Crashed for me in Firefox 7.01.

Re:Full browser? (1)

daid303 (843777) | more than 2 years ago | (#37596786)

Guess: not a mobile browser.

Why not XHTML5? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595662)

WebGL (OpenGL ES) is perfectly capable of this and requires no plug-in.

P.S.: Yes, XHTML. Because I assume they’re professionals that require proper XML error checking of their code. Plain HTML5 is for those who think they are "pro" because they read a book about HTML in the .com bubble era.

Re:Why not XHTML5? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595900)

Maybe because the Earth plugin existed before HTML5 implementations? Maybe because IE doesn't support WebGL? Maybe because *most other browsers* don't enable WebGL by default? Maybe because WebGL support is experimental?

Re:Why not XHTML5? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37596624)

Trololololol. There is no XHTML5, all of the stupid XML cruft from (the now deprecated) XHTML standard was made optional in HTML5 because W3C realised that real websites (both dynamic template-based websites and static ones) are written by humans, not generated by Dreamweaver/<insert crappy WYSIWYG suite here>. Granted, you might still want to use self-closing syntax from XHTML due to force of habit, but not even IE6 chokes on mangled HTML.
 
And I hate to say it but the Google Earth plugin is probably faster and more secure than WebGL.

Linux Users Not Invited (4, Informative)

Psion (2244) | more than 2 years ago | (#37595692)

Unfortunately, the plugin [google.com] only supportes Mac and Windows. C'mon, Google!

Re:Linux Users Not Invited (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37595948)

3D is hard to do on Linux... I should know, I'm a cross platform game programmer.

I mean, it's not like you freetards have created a standard Open Graphics Library, and even if you did it's not like Firefox or Google would be using such a thing, especially not on OSX -- I mean, we know how they all hate open standards and free software. Google's sKetchup 3D editor doesn't run on Loonix or support .OBJ or .3DS either... wait, it does if you pay for it... Oh, and OpenGL does exist... and they're using it on OSX... Yeah, the lack of GNU/Linux support reeks of retardation...

I mean, it's not anyone has OpenGL experience with Linux on their mobile Androi-- oh, nevermind... It's just dumb, and I hate their laziness -- It's hard not to think there are posterior motives afoot given how simple it is to use cross platform tools.

If even indie game devs can figure out how to leverage cross platform, then WTF everyone else?

Re:Linux Users Not Invited (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37596274)

it's not like you freetards

Just fucking die

Re:Linux Users Not Invited (1)

jamarsa (796859) | more than 2 years ago | (#37596308)

it's not like you freetards

Just fucking die

Read the rest of the post, please

Re:Linux Users Not Invited (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37596784)

Looks like someone is mad.

Hey, bro, stop taking words seriously.
Also, learn to read a whole post too instead of snapping at a single word.

Re:Linux Users Not Invited (1)

daid303 (843777) | more than 2 years ago | (#37596798)

OpenGL works, it works great, it works wonderfully! (I hobby program games, not that I'm any good at it)

But, there are problems with OpenGL in the linux world, if it works then it's great. If you driver works that is. If I try 3D on this machine then I get random X.Org crashes and artifacts. It's just some simple intel videocard with minimal 3D options, but I don't think windows is plagued by the same problems.

Re:Linux Users Not Invited (1)

sunderland56 (621843) | more than 2 years ago | (#37597670)

[...] even if you did it's not like Firefox or Google would be using such a thing, especially not on OSX --

You were +1 insightful until you said that OSX is Linux. Now you're -1 offtopic.

Re:Linux Users Not Invited (2)

alienzed (732782) | more than 2 years ago | (#37596116)

and during the Year of the Linux Desktop. What a shame.

Re:Linux Users Not Invited (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37597310)

What else is there?

hehe (-1, Offtopic)

vincent357 (2472318) | more than 2 years ago | (#37596086)

google is a genius company | Free 10$ Sign UP Bonus [blospot.com]

You don't have to run it in a browser (3, Informative)

Animats (122034) | more than 2 years ago | (#37596350)

Google Earth is really a standalone Windows application. [google.com] (Remember those?) Google didn't develop it; it was from a company called Keyhole, which sold it as a service for years before Google bought them out. I had a Keyhole account back in 2003. NVidia had a promotional deal; it was cheaper with an NVidia card.

You could fly along a route in Keyhole, so a "helicopter view" isn't exactly new.

Re:You don't have to run it in a browser (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37597150)

yes, but now it's _google_'s helicopter view, so it must be way cooler.

similar to Nokia Maps' 3D? (1)

dwater (72834) | more than 2 years ago | (#37596458)

http://maps.nokia.com/ [nokia.com]

Note that this also only supports a limited set of browsers/OSes:

"
Check out the list of compatible browsers
Sorry, but for now, 3D Maps only supports the following browsers on Windows and Mac OS:
Internet Explorer 7+
Firefox 3.5+
Chrome
Safari 5+
"

and then there's Baidu which has a nifty model-based 3D view - I forget how to get that going now (something off www.baidu.com, probably), but it's quite impressive.

Re:similar to Nokia Maps' 3D? (1)

cpscotti (1032676) | more than 2 years ago | (#37596882)

You mean this one: http://maps.nokia.com/3D/ ?
Btw, it's way better than this bastardized "google earth inside the browser".
Nothing new here..

Re:similar to Nokia Maps' 3D? (1)

dwater (72834) | more than 2 years ago | (#37597006)

yes, sorry - I had assumed people might notice the '3D' button on the top right.

I tried it once on Microsoft OS, and it seemed to work really well. I guess this embarrased them into releasing what they have...though I've not tried it, so I don't really know.

Isometric view? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37596686)

The other day, a colleague mapped something on Bing, and I noticed the isometric view (bird's eye view) of Bing. I find it pretty cool -- and not just because my office building disappears if you rotate ;-).
I'm hoping Google Maps will do something similar -- for me, this view adds something beyond top-down and street view.

Re:Isometric view? (1)

sunderland56 (621843) | more than 2 years ago | (#37597722)

You mean like this [google.com] ?

Google calls it 45-degree view. Only available in certain locations. Complaints go to the people in the building shown.
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