Google Earth impacts science

Aug 01, 2006

The world's scientists are increasingly using Google Earth's digital globe, which has also attracted millions of non-scientists around the world.

Although Google Earth wasn't intended for scientific work -- merely as an entertainment feature -- the Google search engine's extraordinary globe has become useful for such widely differing functions as tracking diminishing ice sheets, locating crime scenes and monitoring volcanoes, Der Spiegel reported Tuesday.

Shortly after Hurricane Katrina struck the U.S. mainland, Google Earth added 8,000 post-disaster aerial photographs of flooded areas, helping disaster workers locate passable roads and other data, the newspaper said.

The free Google Earth basic program consists of hundreds of thousands of satellite and aerial photos that are updated periodically. The increasing popular program allows users to view their homes or any other area of interest around the world in a matter of seconds.

Google Earth's popularity among ordinary users is influencing the entire scientific community. "Google Earth offers globally available data in a very straightforward manner," Klaus Greve of the Geographic Institute at the University of Bonn told Der Spiegel. "It's also very appealing to researchers who were previously intimidated by (geo-information systems) software."

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Color and texture matter most when it comes to tomatoes

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Native vegetation makes a comeback on Santa Cruz Island

Sep 17, 2014

On islands, imported plants and animals can spell ecological disaster. The Aleutians, the Galápagos, the Falklands, Hawaii, and countless other archipelagoes have seen species such as rats, goats, brown ...

Google Earth dives into oceans and WW II

Feb 05, 2010

Google Earth mapping service is letting people use the Internet to dive into the world's oceans or see the ruin that World War II bombings rained on European cities.

Google street view—tool for recording earthquake damage

Oct 30, 2013

A scientist from Cologne University has used Google's online street view scans to document the damage caused by the 2009 L'Aquila earthquake and suggests that the database would be a useful tool for surveying ...

Recommended for you

Color and texture matter most when it comes to tomatoes

23 hours ago

A new study in the Journal of Food Science, published by the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), evaluated consumers' choice in fresh tomato selection and revealed which characteristics make the red fruit most appealing.

How the lotus got its own administration

Oct 21, 2014

Actually the lotus is a very ordinary plant. Nevertheless, during the Qing dynasty (1644-1911) a complex bureaucratic structure was built up around this plant. The lotus was part of the Imperial Household, ...

What labels on textiles can tell us about society

Oct 21, 2014

Throughout Chinese history, dynastic states used labels on textiles to spread information on the maker, the commissioner, the owner or the date and site of production. Silks produced in state-owned manufacture ...

US company sells out of Ebola toys

Oct 17, 2014

They might look tasteless, but satisfied customers dub them cute and adorable. Ebola-themed toys have proved such a hit that one US-based company has sold out.

User comments : 0