Links: Google Earth fights crime in São Paolo, the skip zone, Stockholm maps, Shape2Earth, GeoRuby, NMF schema

Why-oh-why is there never a “medium news day”? Many of the following entries deserve a post all by themselves, but unfortunately it is now or never:

  • You couldn’t make this up: São Paolo police fight crime with Google Earth, catching the notorious criminal known as “Matador” by triangulating his cell phone signals to his hiding place. (Via Blog do Prof. Palazzo)
  • Ever heard of the Skip Zone? I hadn’t but that’s because I’m not a ham radio operator. Skip zones are a real nuisance, it turns out. The Squid Zone explains why using Google Earth. Great use of Google Earth for science education.
  • Stockholm’s city archives have made available a dozen historical maps of the city, from 1625 to 1922, as KMZ overlays. Be careful, some of the maps are gigantic, clocking in at 50+MB per download, but amazingly, Google Earth is not showing any laggy behaviour as a result.
  • Press release:

    Microsoft Corp. today announced that it will begin to update the Virtual Earth online mapping platform with new, more detailed U.S. imagery under an agreement with GlobeXplorer LLC

    Wait a minute, isn’t that the same company that was bought by DigitalGlobe only yesterday? And didn’t DigitalGlobe strike an exclusive licensing deal for its imagery on the internet with Google just six months ago? That’s pretty clever of DigitalGlobe to end up serving maps to MSFT after striking such an “exclusive” deal:-) (Via James Fee GIS Blog)

  • Landcraft is a gorgeous timewaster (Via The Earth is Square)
  • Tim Beerman’s Shape2Earth is now live. Shape2Earth’s is a plugin for the open source MapWindow GIS viewer, so you don’t need to buy anything else to convert Shapefiles to KML. Shape2Earth costs $30, and there is a free evaluation mode, so you can test this without risk. For more info, check out the user’s manual.
  • The Sandio/Visiontek XG6 3D mouse, previously blogged here, is being shown at CES, and now has a price: $80. It is billed as gamer’s mouse that is also compatible with Google Earth.
  • John Hanke’s post on the official Google Blog announcing Google Earth 4, SketchUp 6, and the revamped 3D Warehouse.
  • France’s Guilhem Vellut, also known as Pochi Superstar, has been building GeoRuby (RubyForge page) which is (as far as I understand it) a library of geospatial database commands for SQL using the Ruby programming language. The latest version, 1.1.1, now supports output as GeoRSS and KML.
  • The schema file description (XSD) of ArcGIS Explorer’s native XML file format, NMF. (Via Pochi Superstar’s links)
  • Google Maps API Blog, that’s a very good point: Expose the geospatial database that propels your mapping site as a KML file, add that file to Google Sitemap, and sit back as as people find the site via Google Searches for locations. And if you’ve done all that work, why not just add KML network links as a feature for the end user… (Via Mikel Maron’s links)

3 thoughts on “Links: Google Earth fights crime in São Paolo, the skip zone, Stockholm maps, Shape2Earth, GeoRuby, NMF schema”

  1. Just some corrections.


    Was not São Paulo police that fights crime with Google Earth.

    That happens in another state of Brazil.

    The correct name is Rio Grande do Sul and the city is Tramandaí. They use, besides the triangulation, Google Earth to get the correct coordinates and the possible scape routes.


    Tim Beerman’s Shape2Earth is not alive, yet.

  2. Good to see that I can rely on Ogle Earth readers to know the geography of Brazil even if I don’t.

  3. so… sandio is releasing a new version of their 3d mouse… i saw it at a show with google earth. pretty cool stuff

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