I am at the Interservice/Industry Training Simulation & Education Conference (I/ITSEC) in Orlando this week showing the Virtual Earth platform, in particular the 3D terrain and models. What a great conference for Virtual Earth 3D. Whether it is the industry folks who build training and simulation products or the attending customers those products serve, this is an audience that appreciates the geospecific, photorealistic and highly accurate Virtual Earth 3D city models. I have rarely had a moment to even blog (and this will be a quick entry) due to interest and booth traffic. Virtual Earth 3D is getting rave reviews from this crowd who see the beauty of the models for mission planning and rehearsal. One visitor marveled at how you could note the reflective surface of one building in Virtual Earth San Diego allowing a mission planner to note that a sniper around the corner might be able to see an oncoming convoy. Another noted that the realism of the models would allow a mission planner to note at what point near an intersection they might need to begin turning guns to have immediate line of fire once at the intersection. Interesting observations about the use of Virtual Earth for tactical planning.
I also have the good fortune of exhibiting along side the Microsoft ESP group, the team responsible for the technology that has fueled Flight Sim. They are now prodiving that technology along with tools as a simulation platform and have an announcement on Microsoft's Presspass site that I encourage you to take a look at for an understanding of how they are serving this industry. One thing the release does not mention is that the group is now working towards integrating Virtual Earth models into their platform to provide accurate models for simulation. In their exhibit, they are showing our San Diego city model in their simulation environment and showing how Virtual Earth can be used in a training environment with flight way points plotted in Virtual Earth driven "instructor" window and sent over to a "student" machine for flight simulation practice. The instructor machine can then monitor the students flight. Very cool to see all this happening over Virtual Earth's San Diego model.
The screenshot below shows a First Person View of San Diego from my workstation with a peer-to-peer connection to the ESP "student" workstation.