View Full Version : July 2007 Virtual Earth Newsletter

02-14-2008, 10:39 AM
July 2007

In the News

Virtual Earth sessions at Inman Real Estate Conference
From August 1st – 3rd, the Inman Real Estate Conference will convene in San Francisco. This conference is the real estate industry's premier event where leaders in real estate, technology, finance, mortgage and innovation meet to share their expertise, plan for the future, make deals and network with each another. This year's event will feature daily Virtual Earth sessions facilitated by Chris Pendleton and Chris Sampson. Below is the schedule of Virtual Earth events:
· Aug 1st 9-10:30 a.m. – Web 2.0 Tools: APIs, Integration & Mashups. Panel.
Chris Pendleton, Virtual Earth Technical Evangelist, Microsoft
· Aug 2nd 3:30-4:15 p.m. – Mapping Intensive. Panel. Chris Pendleton.
· Aug 3rd 9-9:45 a.m. – What’s New with the Search Giants. Panel.
Chris Sampson, Director, Virtual Earth Sales, Microsoft

Starwood Hotels to use Microsoft Virtual Earth Platform
Starwood Hotels operates luxury hotel brands all over the world, including the St. Regis, W Hotels, Westin and Sheraton. As of July, Starwood announced they would integrate Virtual Earth Platform to power their online mapping technology. Originally, a MapQuest platform-based solution was deployed to support the hotel locator. This is a key win for Virtual Earth in that it strategically positions the platform in the travel and hospitality industry. We welcome Starwood as another valued partner.

German students launch wheelchair navigating technology powered by Virtual Earth
Four German students have developed and launched ‘Trailblazers’ a portable GPS device to enable wheelchair users to find barrier freeways through cities, towns & landscapes. Built on the Virtual Earth platform, Trailblazers have added information on to the maps including steps and cobblestones. On June 30, two members of the Trailblazers team participated in “Together sport – Together fun” – a Munich based event especially targeting handicapped people and, together with Microsoft, presented their new navigation system to wheelchairs users and journalists. Wheelchair users can map their own local routes and the more it is used and fed with information the more thorough and helpful it will be for others. You can view a video of the technology in practice at: Trailblazers Teaser (http://users.informatik.haw-hamburg.de/~thome_m/TrailblazersTeaser.htm)

Virtual Earth and ISC team up to upgrade emergency maps in Florida
During the month of July, the Virtual Earth team alongside Information Service Corporation (ISC) began upgrading public access mapping capabilities for the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM). The mapping upgrades will provide up-to-date, visual indicators of the status and location of shelters and other services during a disaster event, particularly hurricanes. Additionally, current weather conditions and surge zones can be viewed. The surge zone mapping feature will indicate where storm surges are likely to intrude upon land depending on the strength of the storm. This joint endeavor between Virtual Earth and ISC is in effort to make the mapping technology available to the public before a strong storm impacts Florida. For more information, visit: Florida Division of Emergency Management - FloridaDisaster.org (http://www.floridadisaster.org/index.asp).

Recent Updates - Microsoft Virtual Earth

New Zealand Aerial Mapping (NZAM) acquires Microsoft/Vexcel 3D Cameras
On June 6th, Microsoft and Vexcel announced that New Zealand Aerial Mapping (NZAM) ordered 2 UltraCam X digital cameras. NZAM is currently operating an UltraCam D camera and the acquisition of the additional cameras will make NZAM one of the largest operators of digital systems in the southern hemisphere. The new X system provides greater ground coverage and higher quality imagery. An additional benefit of operating Microsoft/Vexcel systems is the eligibility to participate in gaining and updating data for Microsoft Virtual Earth. The UltraCam digital system provides a highly detailed 3D model of the world.

Recent Updates - Live Search maps

Live Search Maps expands 3D offering in North America and Europe
This July, Live Search Maps announced the availability of new mapping features like textured 3D buildings, aerial and Birds Eye imagery to several markets including the US, UK, and Canada. With it comes a new rendered map style called 'hill shaded' which gives road style maps the ability to convey elevation. With this update, over 26 terabytes of imagery has become available to Virtual Earth platform customers around the world. The updated features operate faster and with massive volume. For a detailed list of updated cities please visit the team blog at Virtual Earth / Live Maps (http://virtualearth.spaces.live.com).