Google Earth Live?

Impressive as Google Earth is, on two occasions I’ve shown the application to someone only to have them respond, disappointedly, “Oh, you mean this isn’t a live view of Earth?”

Neither person would have been able to tell apart their megabytes from their megahertz if pressed, so it’s understandable that they are oblivious to the technological machinations that would need to be performed before Google Earth might go “live”. We might be able to put a man on the moon, but streaming terabytes of data per second to Earth is quite another matter.

Not that people aren’t working on it. SearchEngineWatch points to an article in the Sydney Morning Herald about Astrovision, a company that purports to be working towards exactly that kind of capability.

Registration required for the article, but SearchEngineWatch’s take is well worth the read. (I just don’t get their concern with privacy. Intelligence services already have this capacity. Democratizing access to such technology can only be a good thing. Who watches the watchers, etc…)

16 thoughts on “Google Earth Live?”

  1. I’m not sure we’d ever see live satellite images for quite some time. At least here in the USA, satellite companies are required to wait at least 24 hours before releasing images because the U.S. government holds their license.

    While other companies outside the U.S. can release these images live, I’m doubting that they’ll ever have the quality that Space Imageing or DigitalGlobe have.

  2. Interesting about the licences, though futile as the product release policy points out, because other countries with similar capabilities can and do release images of Area 51, etc…

    Here in Sweden one tabloid showed the roof of Sweden’s parliament building from Google Earth and asked why that was visible while the White House’s was not (insinuating that it was unfair). The answer of course is that you _can_ buy that information.

    Re going live: Imagine the amount of satellites that would be needed to provide such coverage. AT best Astrovision will point several very high-definition camera art earth and let people zoom in to the medium level. People also forget that it’s cloudy or hazy in most places most of the time. Google Earth has very patiently been stitchied together from innumerable sunny days.

  3. wee have hundreds of satellites in space. some must look at earth. cum on satellites are so far away that you dont need to move it around. just get one that looks at the US. and people dont want to zoom in so much that you can see someones licens plate. just so you can see a car drive by or see maybe see your friend outside, not so much that you can see his face but so you know he is there.

  4. how come there isn’t live google eath cant u just block the leggalle stuff and let people see live

  5. You are doing a great job down there google. I have been able to cruise to Africa and back. The only thind that i would ask is for you to extend your coverange fron nairobi in kenya to show more clear grounds

  6. I moved across the US from WA to Florida and am having difficulty knowing if my car was shipped, hence using Google Earth.

    (Yes, I know I could call the auto transport company, but someone else made the reservation and there are five different companies they could’ve used and I don’t have the customer number)…

    So… today went and found my house/driveway. One of the two cars (mine) is gone (good). BUT, the date says today on top of the screen, and Nov. 9, 2007 (eleven months ago!) at the bottom. Reading some posts here, this is never “Live”. So… I can’t see anything from say, a few days prior at least? Thank you.

  7. my house was burglarized back november 12th 2009 is there any way I can find out from google earth who did it?

  8. @ marcus kennedy –

    yes, you need to call Google and ask them to send you the video tapes of your neighborhood that day.

    that crook is good as caught.

  9. hi

    I am living in new zealand and i have families in fiji.whom i want to see live while i am in new zealand.please advise as to load to see them wat ever they are doing in there farm or in there compound.


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