Tour of the new U.S. Green Building Council headquarters

The United States Green Building Council recently renovated their 75,000 square foot headquarters, located in Washington, D.C. The building is loaded with the latest energy efficient features and has earned a LEED Platinum rating.


The building offers live tours, but not many of us are able to travel there for a tour. To help show off the building to the rest of us, they’ve created an incredible 3D tour of the building using the Google Earth Plug-in.
The tour gives a brief look at the outside of the building, but spends most of the time inside, where the level of detail is quite remarkable — staircases, meeting rooms, and even bathroom sinks!

An audio tour guides you through the building, and you can click on a variety of items for more detail, photos and video clips. During your tour, you can also choose to download products from the building for use in your own SketchUp designs.
For more info, check out the Google SketchUp Blog, the USGBC Virtual Tour site, or just head there and try it for yourself!

Sony’s Project Shiphunt- a new game in Google Ocean

A lot of games have been created using Google Earth (and/or the Google Earth Plug-in) as the playing field. We wrote up an overview of many of them last year, and since then we’ve seen a few other great ones like “Drive the A-Team Van” and “Ships 1.5“. However, I don’t think I’ve yet seen a game that makes such extensive use of Google Ocean as I’ve seen with Sony’s new Project Shiphunt.


The game is very well done and certainly quite challenging. You can play it at or watch the trailer below for more.

Google Mapmaker: Reflecting the ever-changing world around us

These edits are often visible immediately on Map Maker, but aren’t seen by most users until they’re published on Google Maps. In the past we would process edits in large groups, which meant it could take weeks before approved edits appeared on Google Maps. In preparation for yesterday’s launch, we recently added a new publishing system to reflect Map Maker user contributions on Google Maps more quickly. Once a Map Maker edit has been approved, it will now appear on Google Maps within minutes.

You often have the latest information about changes that occur in the places where you live and work. If a new coffee shop opens along your way to work, or you discover a tennis court nearby, you can add to or update the map and help other users find those spots just minutes after your edit is approved.

Map before user contributions

Map after user contributions, showing tennis courts in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware

With our new publishing system and the efforts of the Map Maker community, we’re working together to make Google Maps a more detailed, up-to-date reflection of the world around us. You can see the results of these efforts through real-time edits by users around the world To add your local knowledge, learn more or get started mapping at