Rome Reborn again

When the Ancient Rome layer was announced to much fanfare a bit more than a month ago, many people tempted by the great still shots came away disappointed by the execution — all but the very latest desktops could really do much with it.

Now Frank at Google Earth blog has alerted me that the layers have been tweaked to be much more responsive, so I’ve taken another look.


This time around, the layers are usable on my year-old MacBook Pro. All the content combined still takes upwards of 15 minutes to download on a fast broadband connection, but Google Earth is now far snappier if you want to fly through Ancient Rome.

The layers now also come with this recommendation: “Dual-Core 2.0GHz CPU + 3 GB RAM + High End GPU with 512 MB RAM Suggested”.

In sum, if you’re an educator and thought the layers weren’t usable in the classroom before, give it another go, and consider (once again) entering the Ancient Rome 3D Curriculum Competition for best educational use of the layer.