Google Earth ‘Featured Content’

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From Barry Schwartz at SEW and John Battelle … Today Google also announced (make it stop) “featured content for Google Earth.” From the release:

Google today released Featured Content for Google Earth, a new showcase of multimedia overlays in Google Earth that connect users to information about the world around them from a variety of premium content providers.

Users can access these informative overlays by clicking on the “Featured Content” checkbox in the Google Earth sidebar. In doing so, icons for each Featured Content provider will span the globe, enabling users to click on individual locations and learn about the area’s significance. The Featured Content showcase will be routinely updated to include innovative and diverse contributions from additional content providers.

This is all maps and local. But most interesting to me is the local video content from TurnHere:

Turn Here – This overlay features free city video guides for travel, restaurants, hotels, local events and music around the globe. Told from an insider’s perspective, these short films connect users to information about the best pizza shop in New York’s Little Italy to Pablo Picasso’s favorite hang-out in Halmstad, Sweden.

Here’s my earlier post on why I think TurnHere’s so interesting. And here’s my Search Engine Watch mega-post on Google Earth as a new kind of search engine, the “geobrowser.”

People have scoffed at Google Earth as a mainstream product and other than a novelty. As Google adds more content and utility to the product that original view becomes less and less true.


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