Google Earth lets you fly anywhere on Earth to view satellite imagery, maps, terrain, 3D buildings and even explore galaxies in the Sky. You can explore rich geographical content, save your toured places and share with others.
Google Earth puts a planet's worth of imagery and other geographic information right on your desktop. View exotic locales like Maui and Paris, as well as points of interest such as local restaurants, hospitals, and schools. Google Earth combines satellite imagery, maps, and the power of Google Search to put the world's geographic information at your fingertips. With Google Earth you can fly from space to your neighborhood--just type in an address and zoom right in, search for schools, parks, restaurants, and hotels. Get driving directions, tilt and rotate the view to see 3D terrain and buildings, save and share your searches and favorites and even add your own annotations.
Version 4.3 adds day and night lighting, Street View, more 3D models, and faster rendering speeds.
Note: Google Earth is a broadband, 3D application that not all computers can run. Windows-based desktop PCs older than four years may not be able to run Google Earth and Windows-based notebook PCs older than two years may not be able to run it.
The latest version of Google Earth continues to set the mapping paradigm. Accessible enough for casual users, Google has been added features that make it a necessity for those whose topographic desires are more serious.
Most of the interface's real estate displays a rendering of the globe, which slowly zooms in on a satellite image of your destination once you've keyed it in. The control panel has changed again, but the real draw is the addition of Street View, an on-the-ground 360-degree look at the premises that users may recognize from Google Maps. Also gracing the virtual globe is an option to illuminate it in real-time.
Everything from roads and restaurants to crime statistics can be displayed; subcategories and individual items can be unchecked to show only what you need. Google's driving directions are incorporated, and the user community has produced several nifty mods, including historical maps. There's also integration with Google's 3D rendering program SketchUp, which you can use to place buildings and other ornamentation in a real-life setting.
The only downside to the program is that it can consume a large amount of RAM, so as the developer notes, older machines might experience performance issues. But everyone else is bound to love Google Earth, both as an entertaining novelty and an informational tool.