View Full Version : July 2008 Microsoft Virtual Earth Newsletter

Eric Frost
08-18-2008, 09:20 AM
Microsoft Virtual Earth Platinum Sponsor for 2008 ESRI International User Conference
In addition to the ESRI and Virtual Earth collaboration announcement, Microsoft Corp. will be a Platinum sponsor of the 2008 ESRI International User Conference held Aug. 4Ė8 in San Diego. Microsoft Virtual Earth is also a sponsor of the Federal Reception, Aug. 5, from 7Ė11 p.m. on the West Terrace of the San Diego Convention Center. For more information, please visit ESRI International User Conference (http://www.esri.com/events/uc/index.html).

ESRI and Microsoft Virtual Earth Announce Mapping Platform Collaboration
On July 29, Microsoft announced a collaboration between ESRI and Virtual Earth. The deal enables ESRI ArcGIS software customers to integrate and access the Virtual Earth platform in the ArcGIS Desktop and ArcGIS Server. Customers can easily enhance mapping projects with high-resolution street, aerial and hybrid imagery. For more information, please visit Microsoft Virtual Earth to Be Offered With ESRI’s ArcGIS Online Services: Mapping platform collaboration helps improve business processes, unlock and gain insight into data, and create better citizen and customer connections. (http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2008/jul08/07-29ESRIPR.mspx).

UltraCamX Powered by Virtual Earth Sells Its 100th Camera
The UltraCamX large-format digital aerial camera, developed and distributed by the Microsoft Photogrammetry division, Vexcel Imaging, continued its successful trend with multiple sales in the second quarter of the calendar year, including the sale of its 100th camera. The UltraCamX, which is employed by select aerial mapping organizations to capture the high-resolution aerial views found in Live Search Maps powered by Microsoft Virtual Earth successfully competes with other large-format sensors. For more information, please visit Microsoft Ultracam Digital Aerial Camera (http://www.microsoft.com/ultracam/ultracam/default.mspx).

MyWeather: iPhone Application by Weather Central Integrates With Virtual Earth
On July 11, Weather Central Inc. launched an iPhone application called MyWeather Mobile. The application provides customers detailed weather updates for hundreds of U.S. locations in several ways, including a list of the temperatures. MyWeather presents the information visually by superimposing the details on a map powered by Microsoft Virtual Earth. In addition, the Global Positioning System (GPS)-enabled feature allows weather updates for a customerís location, both in text and on the high-definition-quality map. For more information, please visit Virtual Earth, An Evangelist's Blog : Weather Central and Virtual Earth on the iPhone (http://blogs.msdn.com/virtualearth/archive/2008/07/10/weather-central-and-virtual-earth-on-the-iphone.aspx).

BBC Launches Sportís Olympic Map Powered by Virtual Earth
On July 16, the British Broadcasting Corp. published the BBC Sportís Olympic Map, which is powered by the Virtual Earth platform. An additional resource for Olympic events and local Beijing city information, the application is a source for browsing events and locations via interactive icons. Custom enhanced rollovers add an extra layer of interactivity and content, providing pictures and additional event information. In addition, the map uses the Virtual Earth MapCruncher, which allows enhanced, high-quality imagery through Beijingís inclement weather and cloud coverage. For more information, please visit Virtual Earth, An Evangelist's Blog : BBC Sport's Olympic Map (http://blogs.msdn.com/virtualearth/archive/2008/07/16/bbc-sport-s-olympic-map.aspx).

Ask.com Maps Switches to Microsoft Virtual Earth
On July 2, Ask.com announced that its mapping service will adopt the Virtual Earth platform. The integration allows Ask.com to provide high-quality and versatile imagery to its mapping service, benefiting Ask.comís consumers. Ask.com now also includes Virtual Earth in several of its self-developed offerings, including search and Smart Answers. For more information, please visit Virtual Earth, An Evangelist's Blog : Ask Maps Now Using Virtual Earth (http://blogs.msdn.com/virtualearth/archive/2008/07/01/ask-maps-now-using-virtual-earth.aspx).

Entergy Gives Customers Electrical Outage Information With Microsoft Virtual Earth
Power company Entergy Corp. relaunched several online services that now integrate with the Virtual Earth platform. The services include both its Storm Center and outage maps. Entergy powers parts of Arkansas, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas. Now with the Virtual Earth platform, the company provides its customers a visualization of electrical outages with their respective status. For more information, please visit Virtual Earth, An Evangelist's Blog : Entergy (http://blogs.msdn.com/virtualearth/archive/2008/07/07/entergy.aspx).

California Partners with Microsoft to Launch California School Finder
On July 16, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced the launch of California School Finder, a government online service that provides up-to-date local school information to parents and students. California School Finder streamlines data from schools to the California Department of Education, and eventually into the Web site. The information available includes graduation rates and the Academic Performance Index. With the integration of Microsoft Virtual Earth technology, the service provides a visual component to quickly compare up to 50 California schools. Parents and students can easily locate, tag and compare schools that meet their needs based on region or a specific location. For more information, please visit Governor Schwarzenegger Launches “School Finder” Web Site for California Parents and Children - Press Release by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (http://gov.ca.gov/press-release/10204).

Masternaut Three X Tracks Cyclists Using Microsoft Virtual Earth for Charity
Starting July 14, Masternaut Three X tracked cyclists across Europe via satellite for two weeks using Virtual Earth. The initiative supports Bike to the Futureís Ride Around the World, an important charity ride to raise money for research into pancreatic cancer. Using the unique Virtual Earth mobile resource management technology, Masternaut UK Ltd. tracked the progress of Bike to the Future team members as they attempted to cycle from London to Krakow, Poland, a distance of 1,500 kilometers or 950 miles within two weeks. To view the Web site, please visit Press Release - Masternaut Three X (http://www.masternaut.co.uk/Visitor/press-release.aspx?id=155).

YellowMap.de: Germanyís Most Comprehensive Online Yellow Pages Extends Usability With Microsoft Virtual Earth
YellowMap is Germanyís most comprehensive online yellow pages platform and offers a successful standardized shop finder functionality. For its location-based mobile device services, YellowMap AG recently won the German Internet Prize awarded on a yearly basis by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology. Among its central functions, YellowMap offers company information entries in city maps, including a shop finder, local search and location-based news. The portal offers consumers a very comprehensive graphical representation with high usability. Implementing Microsoft Virtual Earth has highly increased these display options by also offering the birdís-eye view perspective. For more information, please visit YellowMap Branchenbuch f√ľr Deutschland (http://www.yellowmap.de).

Microsoft China and CCTV.com Partner for New Site, Leveraging Virtual Earth Content
On July 23, Microsoft China and CCTV.com announced a collaboration to build a new-generation digital media platform. CCTV.com has exclusive broadcast rights for 3,000 hours of Olympic events via CCTVolympics.com. Virtual Earth is an important component of the site offering local search, transit, up-to-date traffic, send-to-mobile features and weather maps. An alpha version of the site is available at CCTV ÁĹĎÁĽúÁĒĶŤßÜŚ••ŤŅźŚŹį (http://www.cctvolympics.com/).

Microsoft Virtual Earth ASP.NET Map Control Now Available for Download
On July 28, Microsoft announced the release of an ASP.NET Virtual Earth map control as part of the downloadable Windows Live Tools for Microsoft Visual Studio. The map control enables customers to easily implement Microsoft Virtual Earth maps, aerial imagery and birdís-eye view to their Web sites. Other benefits include the ability to drag and drop the map control from the Visual Studio toolbox into Web pages, add shapes to maps, and add preferences for providing directions. Customers can download the new map control from the July 2008 community technology preview (CTP) of Windows Live Tools. For more information, please visit Microsoft Virtual Earth (http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/virtualearth/default.aspx).

European Environment Agency and Microsoft Launch New Campaign to Monitor Beach Quality
On July 30, the European Environment Agency launched the Eye on Earth water campaign, leveraging the Virtual Earth platform. The new campaign monitors beach water quality along the coasts and allows the reporting of quality concerns. Virtual Earth provides a birdís-eye view of beaches that users plan to visit and helps provide information on the cleanliness of the water before they make a trip. For more information, please visit EMEA Press Centre - European Environment Agency and Microsoft Eye on Earth Observatory Bring European Beach Quality Into Sharp Focus (http://www.microsoft.com/emea/presscentre/pressreleases/WaterWatchPR_30072008.mspx).

TrueSpace 7.6: New Tool Set Creates High-Resolution 3-D Images for Virtual Earth
On July 23, Microsoft announced the release of trueSpace 7.6, a 3-D authoring tool set created by its recently acquired Caligari Corp. The tool set enables customers to produce custom high-resolution 3-D models for online shared spaces and Microsoft Virtual Earth. This 3-D freeware is the first release from Caligari since Microsoft acquired it in February 2008. For more information, please visit Virtual Earth, An Evangelist's Blog : Announcing trueSpace for Virtual Earth 3D Development (http://blogs.msdn.com/virtualearth/archive/2008/07/23/announcing-truespace-for-virtual-earth-3d-development.aspx).

Case Studies: Strong Angel III, Houston Associations of Realtors, Instant Access Properties, Rightmove, SportsDo and BT Tradespace (U.K.)
Microsoft released several new Virtual Earth case studies this month, including these:
During a gathering called Strong Angel III in August 2006, 800 civilian and military leaders gathered in San Diego to experiment with technologies to coordinate efforts and assess damage following a disaster or emergency situation. Microsoft provided an open synchronization technology called FeedSync that allows users to share information via Virtual Earth, among other applications. For more information, please visit Microsoft Case Studies: Strong Angel III (http://www.microsoft.com/casestudies/casestudy.aspx?casestudyid=4000002394).
The Houston Association of Realtors (HAR) uses Microsoft Virtual Earth mapping technology to integrate mapping functions with the property search applications on HAR.com, creating an engaging search experience that has increased satisfaction among their 27,000 users and gave members the ability to search over 60,000 property listings. For more information, please visit Microsoft Case Studies: Houston Association of Realtors (http://www.microsoft.com/casestudies/casestudy.aspx?casestudyid=4000002355).
Instant Access Properties (IAP) is a property company that has had 800 percent growth. IAP has implemented Virtual Earth to help users to visualize their propertyís location with powerful online maps and aerial views. For more information, please visit Microsoft Case Studies: Instant Access Properties (http://www.microsoft.com/casestudies/casestudy.aspx?casestudyid=4000002424).
Rightmove is the No. 1 property Web site in the United Kingdom, with millions of visitors every month. Since recently integrating Virtual Earth into AboutMyPlace (which gives house-hunters local information about the area surrounding properties), it has become one of the leading mapping sites in the U.K. For more information, please visit Microsoft Case Studies: Rightmove (http://www.microsoft.com/casestudies/casestudy.aspx?casestudyid=4000002402).
SportsDo is a technology company based in the U.K. that combines sports with emerging business opportunities. SportsDo has been using Virtual Earth for quite some time as a means for tracking and locating, and was able to seamlessly incorporate the new 3-D mapping technology. For more information, please visit Microsoft Case Studies: SportsDo (http://www.microsoft.com/casestudies/casestudy.aspx?casestudyid=4000002360).
BT Tradespace is a Web service that allows small- and medium-sized enterprises to build online presence and connect with online customer communities. BT Tradespace recently integrated Microsoft Virtual Earth into its Web site to provide mapping functionalities for customers. Since then, more than 1,000 new business customers have signed up every day. For more information, please visit Partner Solution MarketPlace (http://www.microsoft.com/emea/partnersolutionmarketplace/CaseStudyDetail.aspx?casestudyid=4000002301).

July Microsoft Virtual Earth Imagery Updates
In July, the Virtual Earth team announced 14.3 TB of new imagery, including ortho imagery of cities throughout the United States, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. The release also features satellite imagery in several cities around the world, including cities in Brazil among others. In addition, birdís-eye imagery is available for more North American and European cities. For a full list of cities with new imagery, please visit Virtual Earth, An Evangelist's Blog : Virtual Earth Imagery Release - July 2008 (http://blogs.msdn.com/virtualearth/archive/2008/07/21/virtual-earth-imagery-release-july-2008.aspx).

Virtual Earth
The Virtual Earth platform is Microsoftís next-generation mapping and location service. It combines the MapPoint Web Service with exciting innovations in birdís-eye,* including satellite and aerial imagery; map styles; and usability, as well as enhanced local search. The Virtual Earth platform has become an exceptional solution for business and government customers.

Virtual Earth powers Live Search Maps, Microsoftís online local search and mapping Web site, but this power can be in your hands too, for any kind of application. For more information about the Virtual Earth platform, please go to Microsoft Virtual Earth: The Integrated Mapping, Imaging, Search, and Location Platform (http://www.microsoft.com/virtualearth/default.mspx).

Live Search Maps
Live Search Maps represents an exciting component of Microsoft Live Searchís vision, which gives consumers a deeply immersive local experience where they can easily find, discover, plan and share relevant location information that is important to them on the Web. Live Search Maps is powered by Virtual Earth, delivering a core set of functionality that combines maps and directions, immersive birdís-eye and aerial imagery, and local search. To try Live Search Maps for yourself, check out Web browser and Live Maps are incompatible (http://maps.live.com), or if you are interested in learning more about the service, go to Live Search Maps Fact Sheet: Live Search Maps brings together turn-by-turn directions, traffic reports, local search, ratings and reviews, and more so consumers can get to their destination quickly and easily. (http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/newsroom/msn/factsheet/LiveLocalFS.mspx).

Birdís eye view and 3-D view are available in many major cities worldwide. In addition, traffic updates are available in many major U.S. cities. For 3-D view you must have Virtual Earth 3D beta installed on your computer. For traffic information availability, visit http://maps.live.com; on the action bar, click on Traffic.