Wednesday, August 24, 2005

ACROSS MY DESK: Google Earth

From: Andy E. Wold
To: (A private Yahoo Group)
I just wanted to add my own comments on Google Earth -- it is awesome as a genealogy tool!
Two of the features that I am currently using quite extensively is the ability to place sets of pushpins and email them to relatives to add to their own Google Earth map, and the ability to overlay images onto the map -- such as parish outline maps in Norway for each County, high-detail aerial photos of ancestors' homes during certain census years, and even cemetery Plat Maps.

You can selectively turn off or on each individual pushpin, or sets of pushpins -- I have mine categorized into places, people and things, such as Smith Family, Norway Census, FHC Locations, Cemeteries, etc. You can even save driving direction routes as "pushpins" -- allowing for multi-part trips on genealogy research excursions, which none of the other online mapping sites that I know of do any longer.

From: Myrt
Thank-you for special permission to quote your comments about GOOGLE EARTH originally posted to a private mailing list.

I agree that this tool is NOT an invasion of privacy, but is a wonderful tool for genealogists. The fact that the map is about 2.5 years old doesn't affect churchyard cemeteries.

The reason I know the aerial pictures are a little old is that my daughter bought a home in Phoenix about 2.5 years ago and immediately put in an in-ground swimming pool. The current Google Earth map clearly shows the neighbor's pools, but not her's.

From: Andy E. Wold
Yes, the freshness and quality of the images can be a problem sometimes, but you can actually find more detailed and current aerial photos on the web and overlay them over specific areas.

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