Thursday, November 17, 2011

[G] Connect with mapping enthusiasts in the Google Earth Community

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Google LatLong: Connect with mapping enthusiasts in the Google Earth Community

Do you ever wonder what Europe’s light pollution looks like? You might be curious to tour the world’s mazes. Or maybe you have a school project to research all of New York City’s cemeteries? In the Google Earth Community, we’ve learned that if you can dream it up, you can map it.

Map showing artificial night sky brightness in Europe, posted by member markdj in the Google Earth Community.

Exploring the Google Earth Community’s discussion forums, you’ll discover a unique geographic encyclopedia built from user contributions. From the beautiful to the bizarre, Google Earth Community maps are spawned from the curiosity and collaboration of forum discussions. The scope and quality of these maps are thanks largely to the Google Earth Community moderators, a core group of forum members who help curate content and educate users on how to use Google Earth as both an exploration and a documentation tool.

Recently, we hosted several members of the Google Earth Community, educators, bloggers and Help Forum Top Contributors in Rome for a user summit. Apart from discussions around new features in Google Earth and the future of geographic content sharing, the event was also a special opportunity for passionate Google Earth users to meet in person. Many Google Earth Community members have been contributing to forum discussions for over 8 years now, long enough to become friends as well as collaborative cartographers.

Attendees of the Rome user summit enjoy a day at the Vatican (photo courtesy of Frank Taylor).

Ultimately, it’s that kind of collaboration that makes the community around Google Earth so special. Have a question about overlays or tours? Top Contributors from the Help Forum are on it. Looking to share your own map of the animals you’ve found in Street View? The Google Earth Community will point you in the right direction. Read more about sharing your Google Earth content, and then begin your own exploration of Google Earth. After all, if you don’t map all the neolithic monuments of the Sahara, who will?

Posted by Robin Ziegler, Google Earth Community Manager

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