I downloaded this a while ago and never really got around to looking at it. I’m very used to using Google Earth which has been around for quite some time now and for the most part, it appears quite a polished product. Well, not always – you see they recently went live with the UK version of street view and skipping from one image to the next can actually turn the whole thing into a mashed up nightmare.
Virtual Earth from Microsoft is a little more simple to use, appears to have more recent ariel shots and while the transition from high altitude to up close and personal mapping is a little clunky (assume net speed to be the problem) I’m loving it. I’m not sure for why, may be it’s because you can see so many differences between a place on Google Earth and Microsoft.
There is one thing I have found odd though; if you zoom in to the Google HQ, the 3d of the draw buildings is really very good, while a look at the Microsoft HQ is not good at all… But, to be completely fair here – MS have over laid images of the buildings onto the 3d faces – they’re just not very clear.
The future of this style of mapping/cartography is huge, yet sadly it’ll never be ‘real-time’ – unless there is an individual satellite for every user. That said, they is a possibility in a handful of areas where this will be possible.
Now all they have to do is get all the webcams and public CCTV hooked into the systems and we’ll be rocking!
PS. Hi, Bothell