Learner-Shaped Technology

April 11, 2007

Brief Furman Tour in Google Earth from Geocoded photos

Filed under: data visualization,general,google earth,mapping,technology — Mike W @ 3:46 pm

Man, Furman campus is beautiful in the spring. I’ve been experimenting with a handheld device (ipaq 6900 series) that EES professor Suresh Muthukrishnan has been using in class. It has built-in GPS, so I went out and snapped a few pictures this morning. It was great to have an excuse to walk around campus in the cool air. The latitude and longitude are geocoded into the picture when the GPS is on, so I wanted to see how easy it would be to create a google earth file (kml or kmz) to show a virtual tour of where I’d been. It looks like Google Earth Pro can rip the geocoding information from the picture and create the file, but I can’t spring for the pro version yet.

Instead I used a program called RoboGeo to create the kml file. It looks like the program is very useful if you don’t have a GPS built into your camera as well. It did a good job creating a path from a series of photos. Check out the tour in Google Earth.

furman_tour_image

In the ‘Places’ window of Google Earth you have to open the ‘routes’ folder and click ‘path’. You can see that it just connects the dots and shows me swimming or boating out to the bell tower 🙂

The trial version throws an error into the latitude and longitude value, so I had to override those manually. That’s why the images are attached where the object is rather than where I was standing when I took the picture. The full version will geocode from the photographer’s location with no kml editing necessary.

I think you’ll also see why I did poorly in photography class.

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