Google Earth big images
November 13, 2006 5:38 PM   Subscribe

Google Earth: Is there a plug-in or standalone app that will make large (say 4000 x 4000 pixel) images of a certain region?

I'd like to save BIG images of certain towns using a fine resolution, but I don't have $400 lying around for Google Earth Pro. The only trick I've found is to crank up my screen resolution as high as it will go and do Ctrl+S saves.. that gets me at least 1600 x 1200.

Am I out of luck, or does such a program exist? It seems that if I fooled Google Earth that I was using an ultra-high resolution, it would give me this ability.
posted by zek to Computers & Internet (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Why not use Google Maps?
posted by phrontist at 5:41 PM on November 13, 2006 [1 favorite]

Just take a load of screenshots. If you use Google Maps they'll stitch together perfectly.
posted by cillit bang at 5:43 PM on November 13, 2006

Also, I'm pretty sure Earth Pro has a one-week trial available.
posted by koeselitz at 5:46 PM on November 13, 2006

I think I found a tiny little script/application someone wrote once that does something like this, only it does it with Google Maps, not Google Earth (same difference though, right?)

I'll see if I can't dig it up. I played around with it, but I don't know exactly what kind of options it had (area, pixel size, etc.)
posted by MarkLark at 5:51 PM on November 13, 2006

Uh, does my link not cover that MarkLark?
posted by phrontist at 6:01 PM on November 13, 2006

Since the chap from phrontist's link took his thing offline, here is a mirror of sorts
posted by stereo at 7:41 PM on November 13, 2006

Sorry phrontist, I didn't check your link, I thought you were just pointing to The links on that page are all dead though.

Looks like stereo's link fits the bill quite nicely, although finding your starting point looks like a pain in the ass.

I did find the program I was talking about, but it was programmed before Google made some major changes and released their API, so it doesn't work anymore. (Most notably the URL structure and method of referencing the individual image tiles.)
posted by MarkLark at 8:35 PM on November 13, 2006

Looks like stereo's link fits the bill quite nicely, although finding your starting point looks like a pain in the ass.

It's actually not that difficult.

1) In Firefox, go to Google Maps. Switch to sattelite view. Zoom into the area you want, more or less.
2) Right-click on the page, outside the map. Choose "Page Info..."
3) Go to the "Media" tab.
4) Scroll down and you'll see a list of URLs that look like this:

That string at the end is the bit you need to paste into the script.

It should be noted that despite the protests made by the person in phrontist's link, there's a reason Google might not want you downloading large stitched aerial / satellite photographs; they are incredibly expensive. A single QuickBird image can cost many thousands of dollars for individual use, and hundreds of thousands of dollars for institutional use, and I imagine the only way Google is able to offer the high resolution imagery they do is through entering into licencing agreements that prohibit public extraction of the data.
posted by Jimbob at 9:22 PM on November 13, 2006 [2 favorites]

You might try using a combination of Gadwin Printscreen and Autostitch. Gadwin is free and will let you set it to capture a defined area. Set the configuration to save to file and you'll get a collection of files to feed to Autostitch, also free. The capturing would be quick ans Autostich doesn't require any hand-alignment.
posted by phearlez at 7:32 AM on November 14, 2006

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