Many German news sites are abuzz just now with the announcement a few hours ago that the entire center of Hamburg has been made into a massive 3D model for Google Earth. Spiegel Online has the best coverage, with photos and a video preview too. Some excerpts, translated:
“This is a world premiere,” said Google spokesperson Stefan Keuchel at the presentation of the project today. “With the textures on the facades [of buildings] Hamburg is the first city worldwide to be visible in this detail. Hamburg 3D will be live in a few days or weeks.
So we’ll have to wait just a little bit more. (More images at Die Welt.)
Looks like Denver was just practice. It will be interesting to see how fast such massive 3D models render on the average computer.
Also important to note, again, that this content is neither user generated (most models) nor Google’s own doing (like Denver), strictly speaking, but a hybrid. Writes Spiegel:
The project was not initiated bu Google, but by the Hamburg@Work initiative, which is sponsored by both the city and private businesses. Google spokesperson Keuchel said that Hamburg approached Google and proposed the project.
The stated reason: To promote tourism. Hamburg was digitized and turned into a 3D model by Cybercity AG, yet another innovative Swiss company.