Boz Adventures included a database of roller coasters around the world.That site closed earlier this year, but Nathan is back with a new, larger site called Attraction Seeker. With roughly 6,500 geo-referenced attractions in its database, it can be quite a useful tool if you’re looking for something to do.
It also has some nice features that allow you to sign-in and track places that you visit so you can keep up with where you’ve been and where you still want to go. It’s certainly a solid upgrade from the old Boz Adventures site, and should be very handy if you’re travelling to a new area and need to find something to do.
Paul van Dinther has done a lot of cool stuff with Google Earth, including putting out the excellent game “Ships” and “Drive the A-Team Van“, among others. He has also done a good bit of work in building and testing new ideas to stretch the Google Earth Plug-in to its limits. He recently built a tool to test the performance of the plug-in in various browsers, and now he’s back with a neat demo to show how to render text and animated bitmaps using the plug-in.
You can try it for yourself on his site. As he mentions on there, you’ll likely get better performance out of it if you use Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer with the demo, as Google Chrome has some speed issues when working with the Google Earth Plug-in.
It’s been nearly two years since Paul van Dinther released the excellent “Ships” game, and it’s recently been updated to be even better.
Check out what’s new in this video:
The new enhancements include:
The new “Ships” had a complete overhaul for the sound system. The new sounds are based on his new 3D sound library as demonstrated here.
The control panel now has a new Autopilot switch. Autopilot only engages when the ship is on a steady course (ie not turning) and the rudder is set in neutral. With the autopilot engaged it is possible to simply close the browser and come back to the page a day later to see where your ship ended up. Perfect for those long trans oceanic passages. This only works when Cookies are enabled on the browser.
You can now operate multiple ships simultaneously. More ships require more PC grunt. Running all the ships may push the limits of what your browser can take.
The control panel now has a Pause switch. Pause was already accesible by pressing the “P” key but a switch makes it more obvious.
Placing your throttles in neutral was nearly impossible to do with the sliders. Now pressing “N” is all it takes to instantly place the throttles in neutral. This is handy when you want to park your ship with autopilot engaged.
The anchor was always a gimmick. It only made sound and nothing more. Now you can drop anchor at very low speed (Less than 1 m/s) which causes the speed to hit zero instantly. The anchor will drag when the power lever is at 20% or more. Continuous full power may even break the anchor chain. With the anchor down, the ships position will now be restored when you load the page again at a later date.
Re-positioning of models
The airship “Hindenburg” has been reposition as to be moored at the “Euromast”
Various ships have been more accurately placed due to imagery changes in Google map data.
New Cruise ship
A more detailed cruise ship replaced the ugly model of the Queen Mary 2. The new cruise ship is courtesy of cleancruising.com.au. Paul build this ship as part of a big library of cruise ship models of which a small selection shown in this video.
If you’ve never played it before you should certainly head over to his site and try it out.
We’ve shown you some neat use of the Google Earth Plugin from EarthvisionZ in the past, such as the ATP World Tour site last November, but their latest site is certainly their best yet.
Fox 31 News in Denver is now running its Home Green-Over Project, a contest offering $75,000 worth of renewable energy products and services. This contest is especially cool because of the great use of the Google Earth Plug-in on the site, which gives users seven interactive 3D tours of an energy efficient home.
Along with the wide view of the home, many of the tours feature cut-away looks so that you can see the products and services offered inside of the home as well.
All in all, it’s presented very well and it’s a great way to show off this kind of content. Be sure to go check it out for yourself. EarthvisionZ will also be launching their new website on Earth Day next week, with a ton of great new features for both visitors and businesses.
The main idea behind SkiMap is to allow users to upload maps from various ski resorts and share them with other users. Recently, however, they added a feature that uses the OpenStreetMap API to convert OSM data into KML vector ski maps. In just the past month, 940 ski maps were generated for use on the site!
The quality of the maps varies by location — European resorts are more fully mapped than US ones, and in the US they’re in better shape on the eastern half of the country. However, with the rate at which new ones are being added, your favorite ski area will probably look good on there very soon.
To see a good example of a ski area, check out Whistler Blackcomb. They have 67 different printed maps for Whistler, along with a handful of “OpenSkiMaps”. Here’s a KML file from one of them if you want to see it in Google Earth.