Recent updates in Google Earth 3D cities

Recent Google Earth city addition: Melbourne

Google Earth has recently been expending the number of cities for which it provides 3D building representations (this example illustrate the recent addition of Melbourne). It seems Google Earth has upgraded it’s capacity to display 3D objects within the viewer. A couple month ago only a few objects could be dsiplayed at a time and Google Earth made use of very large amount of RAM memory. The latest release of Google Earth (5.0) can display tousands of buildings and remain stable and it’s usage of RAM does not sky rocket as it used to. This may open the path towards the use of large number of objects and potentially the creation of more rural landscape where trees and equivalent size structures could be displayed.

However, I am not sure whether Google Earth remains stable when displaying locally hosted objects (from a local machine) or a non-Google server. Did anyone had a try a integrating a large number of ojects in Google Earth recently?

Under water visualisation

This is an example of an underwater visualisation of a marine habitat on the SW coast of Victoria (produced by the Victorian Department of Primary Industries). It displays school of “old-wife” fishes moving in a shallow sea grass habitat.

This visualisation excercise was developped in 3D studio Max and illustrates the strength of this software to create realistic lighting and shadows. We are currently investigating the use of this software to create 3D realistic representations of terrestrial and underwater landscapes and ecosystems. However the lack of spatial references in 3dStudio Max remains a serious limitation to it’s broad application and automation across landscapes.