Some major talent’s been hacking Google Earth’s KML. UK-based TJ has come out with four separate feats of programming derring-do, listed here in order of increasing, well, impressiveness:
1) GE Traceroute: This has been tried before, but TJ’s version also lets you edit locations in the traceroute for accuracy, via an ingenious system that uses Google Earth as the interface. It’s available for commercial licencing.
2) TJ’s Global Nuclear Explosions Database: Yes, this database contains every known nuclear explosion, listed by date, yield, time, country, altitude, and of course, coordinates. Results can be filtered and then viewed as KML placemarks.
3) A better KML reference than Google’s own: That’s because TJ lists undocumented tags as well. (Why aren’t these in the official KML documentation?) Copious exampes illustrate howw the tags are used.
4) KMLDocument for Google Earth: As TJ writes, “I’ve developed a comprehensive KML package for PHP 5 that creates and manages KML XML documents, and can output KML plain text or KMZ gzipped data.”
Details of this beta: “The classes provide each KML element with its own createXXXX() method, has composite buildXXX() methods for building common tag structures (Placemarks, NetworkLinks, etc.), and has convenience methods such as buildIcon(), drawRectangle(), drawCircle(), drawEllipse() and so on.”
It will soon be released for Java and C++ as well, and you can email TJ if you want to help beta-test the PHP package.