Short news: Manifold 2 Earth, Python KML library, Revit 2 Earth, SketchUp 2 Bentley

  • bills itself as the world’s largest hangliding/paragliding flight archive (though with a focus that is definitely European). With over 46,000 user-contributed flights, that may well be the case. All flights are searchable by location and are available as KMZ files — for example, here are two in Northern Pakistan. (Via Wurznepp)
  • Manifold System is a map authoring tool that’s reasonably priced at $245 (though I doubt it really is “the most comprehensive, the most powerful and the easiest to use GIS and mapping system ever created”). Version 7.00, shipped last week, supports Google Earth in a variety of interesting ways, including the ability to let you work with Google Maps content inside the application. There is also a tutorial.
  • On SourceForge, Python KML Library: “A Python library for easy creation and manipulation of Google Earth KML and KMZ placemark files.”
  • The Earth is Square posts more details on the five Google Summer of Code projects for improving NASA World Wind.
  • Revit Building is AutoDesk’s BIM (building information modeling) tool for architects — a SketchUp on steroids (with price to match, at $4,995). Now Avatech Solutions is looking for beta testers for its Revit KML exporter. Developer Matt Mason writes on his blog, “For you Revit users that like to collaborate or just communicate with owners, contractors and others – Earth Connector Revit will be a compelling way to do it!” (The company already has a KML exporter for AutoDesk’s AutoCAD, the Earth Connector, blogged here when it was still in beta.)
  • WorldCAD Access coyly lets us know that “a well-known name in the CAD industry will spring a free CAD program on the market. Free, except for commercial use.” We’re not yet allowed to know who it might be, though. Will it be a competitor to Sketchup?
  • Are you one of the few people still not working at Google? You’re in luck: They’re looking for a GIS data preparation technician for Google Earth.
  • A further tidbit from the ongoing Bentley user conference, courtesy of CAD Insider:

    Bentley has swung itself around to align with SketchUp, the 3D architectural program. Bentley can convert SketchUp files (SKP) to MicroStation (DGN), use SketchUp reference files and place SketchUp files as cells.

    Which I believe means that you can start your projects in SketchUp and then just switch to Bentley MicroStation if you want to get serious.