This blog being what it is, I couldn't let this go without some kind of comment.
Google have rendered Merseyside in 3d. Well not quite all of it, but an awful lot of it. From Garston and Speke in South Liverpool, right up to Crosby. From pastoral Gayton, right down on the South West corner of Wirral, right across to the industrial estates of Knowsley and Kirby. Anywhere they've surveyed recently, which doesn't cover where I am now. No doubt it will soon enough.
The level of detail is remarkable, as is it's ability to render itself very quickly. Having a cooked PC and a fast internet connection no doubt helps. Must give it a try on my old laptop.
The generated landscape is both obviously artificial, and instantly recognisable to anyone familiar to the area.
We were wondering how they did it. It seems probable that they're using aerial photographs (presumably they've had drones or light aircraft going around for the last few months)
This means it doesn't do things that have underneaths very well. By way of example, here are two views of the three main football stadia...
First of all, Prenton Park.
Then Goodison Park
All fine and dandy.
But here's how it looks from inside.
Not quite there is it? Just a squared off compromise using local colours.
Still, it's rather impressive to be able to see my local turf as an abstract 3 dimensional sandbox, where I can wander at will.
I've read that this is just the beginning, and Google will be rolling this out far more extensively in the future.
driving lessons in North Wirral? learn to drive in Hoylake? driving instructor in Birkenhead?