Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Season Greetings and 2008 Achievements

Merry Christmas to one and all. 2008 has been an exciting year for Panoramic Earth, with thousands of 360 panoramas from all over the world added to the site. Here are some of the year's highlights:
  • Growth to over 3400 panoramas, with new images being added on a near-daily basis
  • 360 panoramas from over 40 countries on every continent bar Antartica (though we'd love to see some from there - anybody?)
  • Over 35 contributing panoramic photographers
  • Use of the tours as embedded content in over 100 other places on the internet
  • Incorporation of the Google Earth plugin allowing users to view the images linked to Google Earth from their own browser
  • About 400,000 visitors during 2008
Next year looks to equally exciting as Panoramic Earth grows to become one of the largest collections of cylindrical panoramas on the planet. We intend to introduce a forum for our users and photographers, as well a special directory for panoramic photographers and resources. Hopefully, by the end of 2009 we will have over 7,000 images.

So, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from a content editorial team looking forward to a break!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Panoramic Earth meets Google Earth

Google recently launched a Google Earth plugin API allowing Google Earth data to be viewed in websites in much the same way as the Google Maps data can be used. Panoramic Earth has added this to the viewing options for the panoramas in the site. Thus it is now possible to view the panoramas liked to the Google Earth view in addition to the map, satellite and terrain views previously available. Simply slelct 'Earth' from the Map tab to activate. You may need to download the plugin for this to work. Below is a screenshot of a Brooklyn Bridge panorama from New York in the Google Earth view. A couple of cautionary notes though, the Google Earth plugin is very memory hungry and the geplugin.exe process does not stop when you change back to another view, but keeps collecting data as other map views are moved around. It is also not stopped if that tab / window using it is closed, but the browser is still running. It can, of course, be ended in the Task Manager. Interestingly, the Google Earth plugin is not supported by Google's Chrome browser.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Panoramas from Australia's Red Centre

Panoramic photographer Klaus Mayer has been busy again, and there are now over 25 panoramas from Australia's Red Centre on Panoramic Earth. The panoramas cover sights in the vibrant town Alice Springs, surrounding major tourist attractions and remote outback destinations.

The images can be found on the Northern Territory or Alice Springs panorama index. Klaus enjoys traveling around the outback and remote areas of Australia when he has the time, and this collection is sure to grow in the future. To date, the sites covered around Alice Springs include Uluru (aka Ayers Rock), Kata Tjuta (aka Olgas), Kings Canyon in Watarrka National Park, Hermannsburg and outback destinations like Chambers Pillar, Henbury Meteorite Craters and Palm Valley in Finke Gorge National Park.

Klaus' latest image from the Albert Namatjira Monument brings the total number of panoramas on Panoramic Earth to near 3400.

New Panoramas on Panoramic Earth