Search Engine Journal (among others) reports that the updated Picasa photo service owned by Google now integrates with Google Earth.
This from a post by a Google Picassa engineer on a blog:
Oh, and we also made Picasa work with Google Earth, so you can put information about where you went on vacation into the photos themselves, and then, view your shots on a 3-D globe.
Ok, so that’s now required of online mapping sites for consumers. Great. But, what if I want something simpler, something that doesn’t require a download, like say, linking my Picasa photos to Google Maps? Maybe I can do that via Google tools? Apparently that’s a go in Flickr. Come to think of it, and I’ve been meaning to mention this for a while, buzz for Google Maps has dropped like stone in my experience over the last few months. You only hear about GE. Yes, 3D is sexy, no argument.
But, speaking for myself (and trying not offend my 3D loving friends and colleagues), 3D is a challenge. You need a dedicated client for the Web in nearly all cases. You need to drive the flying tool. It takes longer to load.
Ok, so maybe I’m old; I’m 42. (You an find that out so easily I have no reason, or interest, in hiding it!) I didn’t grow up with 3D video games. I loved playing Pong with my brother (or against myself) on our TRS 80 and later could handle nothing beyond Defender. I get sick on virtual reality rides (like the Star Trek one in Vegas.). I could not even make out the 3D effect with the stereoscope in my remote sensing class in grad school. (“The Colorado River is a the bottom of the Grand Canyon? I’m supposed to see that?”) Mabe I’m not wired for it.
Which brings me to the people I’d be sharing pictures with like my Dad, aunts, uncles, folks 20+ years older than me. While some can (and have) downloaded Google Earth, most wouldn’t be comfortable doing so. But, they could use a URL that taps into Google Maps. My Dad (at 78) “gets” Google Maps but has yet to explore Google Earth.