Paul Heckbert will speak on

"A Tour of Earth using Google Earth"

Digital Imagers Meeting

Sunday Nov. 1, 2009 at 1:15, Pitt Scaife Hall, Room 1102


The Google Earth and Google Maps software allows a user to fly around the Earth using a computer and the Internet. The planet model is built from terrain data and satellite and aerial photos, some with resolutions as fine as just a few centimeters per pixel. There are mechanixms for users to geolocate their own photos, videos, and 3D building models in the database. A tour of the capabilities of this software will be given, and using them, a tour of some interesting natural and man-made features around the world. The software is downloadable free from


Paul Heckbert works as a software engineer at Gigapan in Pittsburgh. Previously, he worked on Google Earth, he developed computer graphics chips at Nvidia, he developed graphics algorithms (including the widely used "Heckbert Algorithm") and was a professor of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University.