For a long time you have been able to fly over places in Google Earth. Now you can do a similar thing in Google Maps. On Friday Google announced the addition of a new option to preview routes in Google Maps. The preview option includes the option to view a route from the air in what Google is calling “helicopter view.” To use the helicopter view enter a starting point and ending point in the directions field then click on “3D” to fly over your route. The video below shows this in action (the video does not have sound).
Applications for Education
If you don’t have access to Google Earth on your school’s computers, the Google Maps helicopter view could be an alternative to the Google Earth’s flyover views. By using the helicopter views students may be able to get a better sense of the topography of an area. For example, have students enter a route that takes them over the Rocky Mountains and have them use the helicopter view to get a better sense of what it would be like to cross the Continental Divide.