The Virtual Earth update

I am pretty impressed with the new features of VE, I’m not going to list it all, the geo blogs have all pretty much covered everything.

I, like many users am not happy that we now get redirected to multimap.com, but it isn’t hard to get round, just use http://maps.live.com/?mkt=en-us

My favourite additions are the new higher res 3D buildings and the ability to record a true HD movie clip, here is a clip I made of Vegas

It is a simple process, add some push pins (make sure you are logged in, or the video option won’t be there), save the collection, go to settings and set your resolution, now open your collection, select actions and ‘Tour & make videos in 3D’ then hit record. It can take a while and don’t try to multitask it eats up all your RAM and CPU cycles, my 3GHz dual core was hitting 100% on both cores at times, I also had it fail to save a recording on one occasion because it ran out of memory, but it didn’t crash and gave a nice error dialog box instead, rather refreshing from a Microsoft product. If you want more control over your movie you can hover over each pushpin and edit its ‘3D tour’ properties.

Overall it will give most users the ability to make movies easily, personally I would like more control over the camera, I couldn’t get it to fly up a street, it always zooms out and then back in, the ability to draw a flightpath would be nice, also it only saves in wmv, I prefer raw avi, so some file type options would also be good.

For more information on the updates check out Steve Lombardi’s blog.

For the original un-youtubed wmv file click here.

Oh and don’t forget the clip is copyright MSFT.

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