Short news: Of APIs, plugins and exporters

  • Google Maps’ API has changed slightly. If you want to link to the KML version of a Google Map location, you now need to add an “@” before the latitude, like this:,2.36&output=kml

    (Via Google Earth Community)

  • Avi Bar-Ze’ev begins a mammoth 9-part exploration of the coming 3D web, (or Web 3D, as he calls it, not to be confused with 3pointD:-). In part one today, some history: Why the precursor to Google Earth wasn’t a browser plugin.
  • SketchUp models can now be “published to the web” with the Hypercosm Teleporter for SketchUp Pro, as per this press release. The idea is that you can then view SketchUp models in 3D from within the browser, using a browser plugin, the Hypercosm Player. Problem is, the plugin is only available in Windows, which rather defeats the entire purpose of building a browser plugin, no?
  • Google Earth developers are among the winners of this year’s San Jose’s Tech Museum of Innovation awards for their work as part of the Global Connection Project Team, “developing software tools for use with Google Earth to help disaster responders get accurate and timely information during recovery efforts.” Nobody tell the World Wind guys. (Via SFGate)
  • For Mac users, Brian Thoth’s Google Maps Plugin for the Address Book is now at version 2.6, featuring improved Google Earth support.
  • Looking for naked people in Google Earth is by now an established sport, but this is new: Possibly finding one in the Netherlands, and then having Dutch TV racing to the scene to try to identify the person. (No luck, though).
  • Log2GoogleEarth visualizes live traffic to a website in Google Earth. I haven’t tested this myself but the screenshot looks interesting.
  • Gorgeous: Digitally Distributed Environments shows us how to make pixel art in SketchUp.
  • IMVU, a 3D chat application for PCs, can now import SketchUp content. Good question: Where is the SketchUp model importer for Second life? (Via 3pointD)

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