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From John Battelle's Searchblog...
Google Says: We'll Get Own Own Data, Thanks
Breaking News: Satellite to Gather Exclusive Images for Google Earth Blasts off in California
Google and GeoEye sign an exclusive deal [news.cnet.com] for imagery taken by this bird. GeoEye makes nice by slapping a Google decal on the rocket along with those of 32 other companies.
Did Google really launch a satellite -- or is somebody's tin foil hat going wonky?
Now tie all these services together and the Google mobile service may know your exact GPS location so they can tell who each of those little ants are as they snap pics on the fly.
sniffing that Orange County air again
You can't sniff the OC air, you have to carve off a slice and chew it.
To quote Steven Wright:
Every so often, I like to go to the window, look up, and smile for a satellite picture.
[edited by: incrediBILL at 10:55 pm (utc) on Sep. 6, 2008]
As for the claim about accuracy - you can already make out the homeplate on a baseball field (look up Wrigley Field - note: not a baseball fan, so don't take anything from that - apart from it being the only one I remember the name of). What would be far better is if they managed to get the exposure/focus issues sorted out so imaging is consistantly OK/good.
Under the deal, Google is the exclusive online mapping site that may use the
My bold. So another company owns and is launching the satellite and this company is providing images to a variety of parties of which Google is only one.
Hehe... Only at WebmasterWorld can this translate to the headline Google Launches Satellite.
- This is not a "Google Satellite", Google is just one of many partners helping to fund it. Pizza Hut sponsored a Russian rocket many years ago and had its logo painted down the side, but that didn't mean it was a "Pizza Hut Rocket".
- There is no "Google Phone", Google is just providing existing manufacturers with the Android operating system (which is itself based on Linux which Google does not control).
- Google hasn't really made much profit outside its Search business, certainly nowhere near the same scale.
When it comes down to it, all that Google really dominates and gains strength from is Search. If Search vanished the company would collapse.
Google Maps is quite amazing to look at, but it's nothing unique. Many other mapping companies can provide photos of your backyard nowadays, it's simply the result of increasingly sophisticated satellite imagery being sold commercially.
Update: Apparently Google does not own the satellite, just the data...
Seriously though, I'm surprised that Google didn't already have their own Satellite. I stopped tracking their purchases over a year ago and at the time they were headed in this direction. This is probably a test and if successful the Google Satellite (GooLite, GooSat, whatever) will launch! Ting, ting, ting... :)
Now, Google will some day be "Geotracking" you with your unique Google cookie -- enjoy.
GeoEye-1 will orbit 423 miles above Earth, but it will be able to gather imagery with details the size of 41 centimeters... Google, though, is permitted to use data only with a resolution of 50cm because of the terms of GeoEye's license with the U.S. government.
Each day, the satellite will be able to gather a high-resolution "pan-sharpened" format surface area equal to that of about New Mexico, the company said.
"The GeoEye-1 satellite has the highest ground resolution color imagery available in the commercial marketplace and will produce high-quality imagery with a very accurate geolocation," said Google spokeswoman Kate Hurowitz, adding that most commercial satellite imagery has a resolution of 60cm. "It is our goal to display high-resolution imagery for as much of the world as possible, and GeoEye-1 will help further that goal."
The satellite was actually built for the U.S. National Geospatial Agency and Google only 'buys' images. It is not a Google 'satellite'.