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 Google diving into 3D mapping of oceans

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Date posted: 01/05/2008

Google plans to create a 3D oceanographic map, now called Google Ocean.

People will be able to see the underwater topography, called bathymetry; search for particular spots or attractions; and navigate through the digital environment by zooming and panning.

Google Ocean will feature a basic layer that shows the depth of the sea floor and will serve as a spatial framework for additional data.

Additional data will be displayed as overlying layers that depict phenomena like weather patterns, currents, temperatures, shipwrecks, coral reefs, and algae blooms.

It is unclear at this time whether Google plans to link Google Earth and Google Ocean together as one.

"There is no real terrain or depth model for the ocean in Google Earth," said Tim Haverland, a geospatial application developer at the Fisheries Service of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). "You can't get in a submarine and in essence fly through the water and explore ocean canyons yet."

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