Google CEO Sundar Pichai has announced a new ”Timelapse” feature for Google Earth in its biggest update since 2017, which will make anyone watch time unfold and witness nearly four decades of planetary change. For this Google has compiled 24 million satellite photos from the past 37 years into an interactive, explorable 4D experience.
“Our planet has seen rapid environmental change in the past half-century — more than any other point in human history. The new Timelapse feature in Google Earth compiles 24 million satellite photos from the past 37 years into an interactive 4D experience,” Pichai said on Thursday.
“For the first time, we’ll put a vivid depiction of our rapidly changing planet into the hands of everyone, everywhere,” Rebecca Moore director of Google Earth, Earth Engine, and outreach told reporters during a news conference.
Now in the biggest update to Google Earth, since 2017, people will be able to see our planet in an entirely new dimension, she said.
“Timelapse in Google Earth is really a big leap forward. Because now our one static snapshot of the planet has become dynamic providing ongoing visual evidence of Earth’s changes from the climate and human behaviour occurring across space and time over four decades,” Moore said.
Timelapse, she said, was made possible because of the US government and European Union commitments to open and accessible data. These images were provided by NASA, US Geological Survey, European Commission, and the European Space Agency, she said.