Google Earth surprise!

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You probably already know that I am a fan of Google Earth. What an amazing program – you can have virtually a “treetop” view of just about any place in the world. And this great program is also free.

But there’s more…Google Earth actually has a flight simulator program built into it! That means you can have the controls of a virtual airplane (your choice of an F16 Fighter, or a more comfort-oriented SR22 4-seater). You can choose where you want to fly, and since this is inside the Google Earth program, you appear to be actually flying over whatever city you choose. To start flying, open Google Earth and then hit Ctrl + Alt + A.

It takes a little practice to avoid flying the plane in uncontrolled loops and crashing into the ground. But if you are interested in flying, or just want to see what it is like to fly over your city, it’s worth a try. You can see the various keyboard controls here.

Note: you have to have the most current version of Google Earth in order to use this feature.

This week’s video is a hand-shadow puppet presentation. Big deal, you say? Just watch it.

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