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cosyr
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Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 1:42 pm

I have been watching the progress of construction at SFO on Google Maps, and while I know they don't update maps very often, they have a couple times since construction of Terminal 1 started. The other day though, I noticed, it doesn't look like they have updated maps since the last time I looked, construction seems to be at the same stage, but all the planes at the airport are gone. Not one at a gate. There are a few taxiing, but if you click on Globe, those disappear too. I thought maybe they pieced shots together at a quiet time, when they might have clearance to fly low over the airport, but if you look at Concourse G, you can see shadows under some of the jetways, and not under others, suggesting that jetway is at a plane, and it was taken out of the image.

https://goo.gl/maps/UXmSYLiXKMEVyEva6

I also wondered if they were in the process of doing this at SEA as well, as the entire south half of the airport is empty. https://goo.gl/maps/7zory1cr8LnHevjJ9 and you can see half of a Southwest 737 cut off by picture overlay.

If this is a copywrite or trademark issue, why don't they just blur the titles? Why photoshop them out all together? It is really disappointing, as these aerial maps really tell a story that other pictures can't.

Has anyone noticed this at other airports?
 
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DL717
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 1:43 pm

They do sometimes, or the image is very dated. They’ll miss a bit and you get a fuzzy image of a plane and you can almost tell who it is.
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cosyr
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 1:49 pm

DL717 wrote:
They do sometimes, or the image is very dated. They’ll miss a bit and you get a fuzzy image of a plane and you can almost tell who it is.

The image can't be too dated as Terminal 1 is very close to its current state of construction.
 
bevan7
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 1:53 pm

Its my understanding that the 3d maps are created from mixture of photos taken at all 4 angles. If the plane is only there for one of the photos then it is taken out. It's the reason you don't see many cars driving on the road or people in places. Ironically if you look at heathrow terminal 3 there are some interesting looking planes that are the result of merges - AA on one side and BA on another. CX tail with BA titles.
 
32andBelow
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 1:54 pm

They got an algorithm that is trying to take everything that isn’t the ground or a building out of the photos
 
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STT757
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 2:02 pm

I noticed this too when looking at MCO in Google Earth. No planes, I thought it was maybe just a slow
Day.


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friendlyskies22
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 2:07 pm

Pretty weird....I checked OAK, SJC, LAX & FAT and the images looked normal. Bing Maps shows the proper view of SFO,
although I find that Bing Maps is 2-3 years older than Google, so Images look different.
They definitely erased the aircraft, as the end of some jetways are blurry, like they were hooked up to an aircraft.
Suggest you send feedback (see bottom right of Google Maps page) and ask them whats up. I have used that tool a number
of times on bad street names, and they responded, and fixed the issue.
 
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 2:07 pm

See earlier discussion: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1420211
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uta999
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 2:30 pm

Do you think someone has asked that all planes be removed generally, on 'security' grounds? Why not leave it as it was. This is a mess. Look at LHR too. Most stands are empty.
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Polot
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 2:44 pm

As stated, Google has a new algorithm that removes non static objects from their maps. The primary purpose is to remove cars/pedestrians from the streets/sidewalk so you can see them easier, but planes (being non static across images) also get removed.
Last edited by Polot on Wed May 01, 2019 2:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
rlwynn
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 2:45 pm

What possible security reason would that be?
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 3:33 pm

If you look at JFK it is empty
 
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casinterest
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 3:38 pm

Are you using Globe View or the actual satellite shot?

The 3d GLobe is horrible.

Click on options for Google maps and turn off the Globe. I still see planes in maps at RDU, JFK, BOS
Where ever you go, there you are.
 
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 7:37 pm

rj1385 wrote:
If you look at JFK it is empty


Kind of creepy. They actually do a pretty good job, you can even see the J lines on most of the stands. If you look closely at stall 25 (don't know if those numbers are also the gate numbers) on T5, you can see part of a plane.

Not sure this link will work: https://www.google.com/maps/@40.6475177 ... a=!3m1!1e3
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 8:40 pm

Apple Maps data is more up-to-date in the Bay Area than google is.
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Bradin
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 8:55 pm

<sarcasm>Thanos is making planes, cars and non-static objectives disappear on Google Maps</sarcasm>
 
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cosyr
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 9:26 pm

casinterest wrote:
Are you using Globe View or the actual satellite shot?

The 3d GLobe is horrible.

Click on options for Google maps and turn off the Globe. I still see planes in maps at RDU, JFK, BOS

It is interesting that on JFK, only one plane is there in Globe, but they're all there on regular satellite view. At SFO, there are actually fewer in Globe, but other than taxiing planes, none in regular. If JFK can keep them in regular, why can't SFO. I don't want to use 3D views, I just want aerial images.
 
32andBelow
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 9:36 pm

cosyr wrote:
casinterest wrote:
Are you using Globe View or the actual satellite shot?

The 3d GLobe is horrible.

Click on options for Google maps and turn off the Globe. I still see planes in maps at RDU, JFK, BOS

It is interesting that on JFK, only one plane is there in Globe, but they're all there on regular satellite view. At SFO, there are actually fewer in Globe, but other than taxiing planes, none in regular. If JFK can keep them in regular, why can't SFO. I don't want to use 3D views, I just want aerial images.

The point is to map the static ground. Not to document airplanes.
 
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 10:35 pm

32andBelow wrote:
The point is to map the static ground. Not to document airplanes.

Really?
Surely there are specialist applications that cater for surveyors and geologists and those that require "pure" images?

I thought the point of Google maps was to provide an image that was of interest to the general public.
(and then as a by-product of your interest flood your screen with advertising)

I would far rather see an image of San Francisco populated by human beings, with cars on the streets and aircraft at the airports.
Take these away and all you have is a ghost town.

Take a look at this image of Tulsa.
Not a single car on the street, nor a pedestrian on the sidewalk.
That's not a place I want to visit....

Image
Thx to wikipedia
Nothing to see here; move along please.
 
32andBelow
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Wed May 01, 2019 10:53 pm

SheikhDjibouti wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
The point is to map the static ground. Not to document airplanes.

Really?
Surely there are specialist applications that cater for surveyors and geologists and those that require "pure" images?

I thought the point of Google maps was to provide an image that was of interest to the general public.
(and then as a by-product of your interest flood your screen with advertising)

I would far rather see an image of San Francisco populated by human beings, with cars on the streets and aircraft at the airports.
Take these away and all you have is a ghost town.

Take a look at this image of Tulsa.
Not a single car on the street, nor a pedestrian on the sidewalk.
That's not a place I want to visit....

Image
Thx to wikipedia

It’s a navigation tool so you can get to where you need to go.
 
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 12:15 am

32andBelow wrote:
It’s a navigation tool so you can get to where you need to go.

"It" is a navigation tool?
You don't need a satellite image if all you need is navigation. Maps (both digital and paper) already come with empty roads, and not a vehicle in sight.
If you are going to add satellite imagery, it suggests something else.
Is Google Earth just a navigation tool too? :shakehead:

Going back to the image of Tulsa; can you easily tell if that empty street is one-way or bi-directional?
Sure, you can find out if you look hard enough. You could even look at a paper map and see if there are any arrows.
An empty satellite image doesn't offer any clues.
However you can add the cars back in, and then the answer jumps out at you.

Image

I wouldn't necessarily make a case for adding traffic to an empty street just for that purpose, but the opposite is happening here; traffic is being removed in order to "censor" the image. The end result is not flattering.
Nothing to see here; move along please.
 
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 3:53 am

Google Maps and other map tools are wonderful, educational, informative and valuable. Everyone understands that the satellite image is taken at a point in time, and
we all expect to see what the satellite sees. To begin to modify the images for some reason dilutes the value of the app/site. I have wondered before about certain
sensitive sites, like military bases, but other locations should be shown as they were photographed at that point in time. I'm hoping that Google (and others) aren't considering a paid resource that would show 'unedited' images. How many people does Google have to employ to decide and edit images to make them 'OK'? I can understand license plates and some 'people' images being blurred or removed, but other edits, like the SFO aircraft example are overkill and counterproductive.
 
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 6:31 am

32andBelow wrote:
SheikhDjibouti wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
The point is to map the static ground. Not to document airplanes.

Really?
Surely there are specialist applications that cater for surveyors and geologists and those that require "pure" images?

I thought the point of Google maps was to provide an image that was of interest to the general public.
(and then as a by-product of your interest flood your screen with advertising)

I would far rather see an image of San Francisco populated by human beings, with cars on the streets and aircraft at the airports.
Take these away and all you have is a ghost town.

Take a look at this image of Tulsa.
Not a single car on the street, nor a pedestrian on the sidewalk.
That's not a place I want to visit....

Image
Thx to wikipedia

It’s a navigation tool so you can get to where you need to go.


Google Maps is for when you are lost.
Google Earth is for when you want to 'get lost.'
 
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 6:41 am

If you look over Arundel, West Sussex there is a Virgin 747 parked on a field next to the A27
 
smallmj
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 11:28 am

I noticed this too looking at the latest image of YYZ on Google Earth. The image from June 10 2018 (latest) has very few planes. The previous one from May 8 2018 has planes at almost every gate.
 
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 11:47 am

SheikhDjibouti wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
It’s a navigation tool so you can get to where you need to go.

"It" is a navigation tool?
You don't need a satellite image if all you need is navigation.

Not entirely correct. In my line of work, I actually do use the satellite image on Google maps to navigate to where I need to go at times. Why? The address I am given in my dispatch information may not necessarily be where the truck entrance actually is. I have been to places where the address I get is that of the main office, but the truck entrance is either further down the road or on a completely different road altogether. Without looking at the satellite image beforehand, I wouldn't know this, and trying to turn a 72-foot long truck around is not really all that straightforward if you miss a turn.
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WildcatYXU
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 11:59 am

smallmj wrote:
I noticed this too looking at the latest image of YYZ on Google Earth. The image from June 10 2018 (latest) has very few planes. The previous one from May 8 2018 has planes at almost every gate.


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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 12:00 pm

I actually noticed this at FRA just last week and thought it odd that not only was just 1 gate occupied, but that lone A320 was the only aircraft at the airport period.
 
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SomebodyInTLS
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 12:21 pm

SheikhDjibouti wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
The point is to map the static ground. Not to document airplanes.

Really?
Surely there are specialist applications that cater for surveyors and geologists and those that require "pure" images?

I thought the point of Google maps was to provide an image that was of interest to the general public.


The pupose of a map is to be... a map.

Maps don't show people, cars and planes. Those are called photographs. ;)
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 12:42 pm

I see some if I look at Andrews AFB.
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 1:05 pm

IIRC this issue first came up when these maps were showing people. Privacy concerns were raised, and Google and others worked at removing people. Then as others mentioned Google and etc. and most of their users determined that this was a map, not a people,car, and plane plane tracking tool. Those things are available from some satellite operators, but you have to pay for them.

The previous post from a 72 foot truck driver illustrates what these maps can do. OTOH, most state DOTs do provide camera shots of critical passes, intersections, and traffic areas. There are undoubtedly other maps available, but a rule of map making is that one map cannot do everything. (although I fantasize a foldable unbreakable 2' by 3' foot screen with every overlay maps have ever depicted)
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cosyr
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 1:06 pm

SomebodyInTLS wrote:
SheikhDjibouti wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
The point is to map the static ground. Not to document airplanes.

Really?
Surely there are specialist applications that cater for surveyors and geologists and those that require "pure" images?

I thought the point of Google maps was to provide an image that was of interest to the general public.


The pupose of a map is to be... a map.

Maps don't show people, cars and planes. Those are called photographs. ;)

And that is why Google has Maps, Satellite view is not for navigation. And Satellite view is just a compiling of...photographs.
 
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AirKevin
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 1:49 pm

frmrCapCadet wrote:
The previous post from a 72 foot truck driver illustrates what these maps can do. OTOH, most state DOTs do provide camera shots of critical passes, intersections, and traffic areas.

I'm more so talking about shipping and delivery facilities. DOT wouldn't have information about that.
cosyr wrote:
SomebodyInTLS wrote:
SheikhDjibouti wrote:
Really?
Surely there are specialist applications that cater for surveyors and geologists and those that require "pure" images?

I thought the point of Google maps was to provide an image that was of interest to the general public.


The pupose of a map is to be... a map.

Maps don't show people, cars and planes. Those are called photographs. ;)

And that is why Google has Maps, Satellite view is not for navigation. And Satellite view is just a compiling of...photographs.

Like I said, I've used the satellite view on Google Maps for navigation before. At some of these facilities I go to, the places are so large and the security guard is telling me turn here, turn there, it can sometimes be impossible to keep up with everything. At that point, I just whip out my phone, pull up Google Maps, and tell the guard "Okay, we're here. Where is it you would like me to go." Guard points to the general area where I need to go, and I'll use the satellite view to navigate around the facility. Granted this method doesn't always work, especially if the facility is so new it's not even on the satellite image, but it works most of the time.
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einsteinboricua
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 2:04 pm

When I use Google Maps, the last thing on my mind is whether the airport stands are occupied and whether there are cars on the road that the app is telling me to go through. Satellite imagery is to get a feel of my surroundings. Sometimes Maps tells you "you've arrived" yet you have no idea where exactly your final destination is.

If anyone needs satellite imagery for navigation, odds are they don't need to reference non-static object. That means that airplanes and cars are not required. Besides, in an era of "I want my data to remain private", does anyone want their car seen on Maps? Heck, before a recent refresh to the STL maps, my car was visible on maps (I could tell by the stickers...and that my car was the only Rio in that community).
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SomebodyInTLS
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 2:21 pm

cosyr wrote:
SomebodyInTLS wrote:
Maps don't show people, cars and planes. Those are called photographs. ;)

And that is why Google has Maps, Satellite view is not for navigation. And Satellite view is just a compiling of...photographs.


Satellite view certainly can be and is used for navigation! Because it shows more geographical features than the standard map.

I myself have created routes for a running club from the satellite view since it provides a much better indication of the type of terrain and features people will be passing through and crossing. I may do a final cross-check against more detailed maps not available on Google, but the satellite view was the basis for planning the route.

And the current satellite view on Google is *NOT* just compiled photographs - that's exactly why the thread was started! It's now a detailed 3D computer model of the world... and I assume the standard map view is just a different representation of the same model used for the "satellite" view.
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seb146
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 3:32 pm

SheikhDjibouti wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
It’s a navigation tool so you can get to where you need to go.

"It" is a navigation tool?
You don't need a satellite image if all you need is navigation. Maps (both digital and paper) already come with empty roads, and not a vehicle in sight.
If you are going to add satellite imagery, it suggests something else.
Is Google Earth just a navigation tool too? :shakehead:

Going back to the image of Tulsa; can you easily tell if that empty street is one-way or bi-directional?
Sure, you can find out if you look hard enough. You could even look at a paper map and see if there are any arrows.
An empty satellite image doesn't offer any clues.
However you can add the cars back in, and then the answer jumps out at you.

Image

I wouldn't necessarily make a case for adding traffic to an empty street just for that purpose, but the opposite is happening here; traffic is being removed in order to "censor" the image. The end result is not flattering.


The image of Tulsa is a one way street with traffic going away from the camera. I can tell by the street sign nearest the camera and the lines painted on the street. White lines indicate multiple lanes headed in the same direction. If it were a two-way street, there would be a yellow line pained on the street.

You bring up a point I have wondered about for a long time: why do street view images always look so desolate? I look at some street view images and I do not see many people or cars or activity where there should be. It seems strange to me. I understand blurring out licence plates and "adult themed" stickers and even faces but why get rid of everything? It gives me unrealistic expectations of places like Tampa and Columbus.
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TSS
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 4:00 pm

SheikhDjibouti wrote:
Take a look at this image of Tulsa.
Not a single car on the street, nor a pedestrian on the sidewalk.
That's not a place I want to visit....

Image
Thx to wikipedia


I can't speak for Tulsa, but when I was in Akron Ohio a few years ago that's exactly what their downtown looked like: Everything clean and evidently well-maintained, but also utterly devoid of human life. It was really creepy. It felt like I had walked into an episode of The Twilight Zone or something.

If I'm not mistaken Tulsa is the home of Oral Roberts Ministries/University/etc., so maybe that photo was taken on a Sunday while everyone was in church.
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 4:17 pm

TSS wrote:
If I'm not mistaken Tulsa is the home of Oral Roberts Ministries/University/etc., so maybe that photo was taken on a Sunday while everyone was in church.

I am thinking it is taken earlier morning like 5am (at a a time of year when sunrise is early). I have seen this done in many cities and towns. It looks like a normal daytime but the place is empty.

Fun bit on this:
I remember as a kid visiting my grandparents in Scotland and one time I woke the day after we got there and it was bright daylight. I thought it must be nearing noon, so I got up got dressed and went down to the kitchen and... empty... went outside to see if everyone was there (they sure weren't home it was silent inside)... no one.... so I went down the street a bit to the corner... completely silent, empty, no cars, no people.... weird. So I went back to the house and finally found a clock and it was 4am... I went back to bed and tried to sleep. :spin:

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cosyr
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Thu May 02, 2019 5:52 pm

SomebodyInTLS wrote:
And the current satellite view on Google is *NOT* just compiled photographs - that's exactly why the thread was started! It's now a detailed 3D computer model of the world... and I assume the standard map view is just a different representation of the same model used for the "satellite" view.

More often than not, I find the standard view has completely different images than the 3D view. Often much more updated, because they just have to piece photographs together. They have to do more to manipulate the images for 3D, so I think they are less concerned with how old they are.
 
friendlyskies22
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Fri May 03, 2019 3:10 pm

"The pupose of a map is to be... a map.
Maps don't show people, cars and planes. Those are called photographs. ;)"

True, and Google Maps Satellite View are photographs. Most views I see are single photographs, a few views are
multiple photos stitched together, like the airport examples. I use G-M Satellite View all the time to determine
good photograph taking locations (terrain/access from other roads, etc.)
I'll say it again, most people I expect use Satellite View to see a photo of a place at a point in time, whether it was
taken a year ago or three years ago. For Google to 'santitze or alter the image dilutes the value of the image/site.
Why bother?
 
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SomebodyInTLS
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Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Fri May 03, 2019 4:02 pm

cosyr wrote:
SomebodyInTLS wrote:
And the current satellite view on Google is *NOT* just compiled photographs - that's exactly why the thread was started! It's now a detailed 3D computer model of the world... and I assume the standard map view is just a different representation of the same model used for the "satellite" view.

More often than not, I find the standard view has completely different images than the 3D view. Often much more updated, because they just have to piece photographs together. They have to do more to manipulate the images for 3D, so I think they are less concerned with how old they are.


Maybe it depends where you are, but in all of the places I've looked in the last few months (probably mostly Europe, I also just tried SE Asia to verify) - you click satellite view, then when you press SHIFT and move the mouse the exact same view simply tilts and reveals depth. And those images don't change when you zoom or move about. Whether they are 3D modelled objects or just projected composite satellite images - the exact same model is used for 2D and 3D projection.

To be clear, when there are no objects in the model, it is just a projection of a flat image onto a 3D terrain model, but that image has been stitched together from multiple satellite shots and filtered as described upthread.

Are you talking about the 3D map representation or Street View? Because that's something else completely.
"As with most things related to aircraft design, it's all about the trade-offs and much more nuanced than A.net likes to make out."
 
Airstud
Posts: 4625
Joined: Wed Nov 29, 2000 11:57 am

Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Fri May 03, 2019 4:19 pm

cosyr wrote:
Terminal 1 is very close to its current state of construction.


"Very close to its current state?" :confused: :confused: :confused:

BTW, you look more like you do now than you did when you got here.
Pancakes are delicious.
 
teiseman
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri May 03, 2019 6:18 pm

Re: Is Google photoshopping planes out of maps?

Fri May 03, 2019 7:07 pm

If you take a look at Beale AFB, you'll see an anaglyphic U-2 on the runway, as well as a C-5 awaiting clearance to take off. There are also a number of Global Hawks and U-2s on the tarmac. A quick check of Phoenix Sky Harbor International reveals plenty of airliners at the gates, so the 'algorithm' to remove aircraft is clearly being applied selectively.

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