Links: Google Earth for infighting, 4D Utrecht, Geology KML, anyone?

  • Google Earth, infighting tool: Seriously, AFP is reporting that “Hamas claims Palestinian rival spied for Israel” using Google Earth. In a press conference, a Hamas intelligence officer is claiming Fatah operatives have confessed to mapping out Gaza landmarks such as “mosques, institutions, tunnels or workshops”, “with the help of the Google Earth programme,” sending the information to Israel so they can better bomb those spots. A couple of observations:
    • Israel is highly unlikely to need the help of a Google Map to figure out where the mosques are in Gaza.
    • The Fatah aide is probably right when he says, “This is part of a plan being carried out by Hamas leadership in Damascus to push back the Cairo dialogue” (reconciliation talks between Fatah and Hamas).
    • I seriously hope that the people that have confessed were not somehow involved in a humanitarian mapping project, such as OpenStreetMaps in Gaza, and have now been caught in the paranoia of post-conflict retribution.
  • 4D Utrecht: Michael Quist writes:
    I’ve modelled a large portion of the city of Utrecht. In this city there will be very big changes in the next couple of years. I’ve used the timeline function in GE to show what the changes will be.

    It’s a 25MB KML file, but an interesting use of the timeline.

  • Google Geology? Ron Schott over at Ron Schott’s Geology Home Companion Blog makes the case for a comprehensive KML geology layer.
  • Atlantis Unbound? Kurt’s weblog thinks that the blame for the Atlantis debacle should be shared little by Google, for not making it clear what the data actually represents:
    Since Google picked up the data, I really think it is Google’s responsibility to put in a link in Google Earth that explains what the ocean bathymetry is all about. I can think of several marine scientists who would happily write a draft of an explanation with Google at no charge to Google.

    (As an aside, the reason a ship was checking out the ocean floor just there was to see if it was a suitable spot for nuclear waste disposal!)

  • Map Channels Version 3: Online mapping tool Map Channels has just had an extensive overhaul, adding support for spreadsheet data, GeoRSS, and marker clustering among other things.
  • Navigating underwater: Using Google Earth blog has some tips for how to best navigate underwater in Google Earth.
  • Belgeoblog: Belgian Google Earth blog Belgeoblog is back.
  • 3D Collision debris: Over at Barnabu, James Stafford’s been performing his usual programming wonders. The latest: A Google Earth plugin version of a space debris tracker for the satellite collision over Siberia on February 10.