Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Find Places on Google Earth

Through the wonders of satellite imaging and aerial photography, Google Earth lets users zoom in on any spot on the globe. Whether you're looking for the house you grew up in, trying to find a place you once visited, or doing armchair traveling to exotic destinations, this virtual map can be fun and useful. Bring up the tool and follow these steps to find places.
  1. Click the "Borders and Labels" box in the Layers toolbox. Turning on this feature shows the borders of countries, states and provinces, and counties. Also, many cities and towns, as well as physical features like mountain ranges and rivers, are labeled.
  2. Zoom in on a general location using the borders and labels as your guides. You could zoom in on a country, a city name or a labeled feature, for example. This involves taking a trial-and-error approach where you find places by scanning the globe and zooming in.
  3. Zoom in closer and scroll across until you find landmarks you recognize. For example, if you're exploring England's capital city, you can zoom in until you locate the London Eye along the Thames River. Other especially good landmarks to locate visually are towers and space needles.
  4. Use the Search toolbox to pinpoint an exact location. This is handy when you don't know the general location of a place you're hunting for but you have an address on hand.
  5. Click on "Fly To" in the text box. Type in the address. Include the exact, complete address if you know it. Otherwise, type in as much of it as you know.
  6. Type in a business name or famous location. If you don't have an actual address, but you know what's nearby, type that in. You can type in anything from Disneyland to the Louvre to Jacob's Hardware Store. This will put you in the general area.
  7. Use your mouse to zoom in and scroll to explore a bit in order to pinpoint your intended location. Once you're in the general vicinity of the place you're searching for, you can scroll and zoom to manually continue your search.
  8. Narrow your search by getting more specific. It's very likely that many places will be listed when you search for a business with a common name (like Jacob's Hardware Store). So get more specific to eliminate many of these entries. Include a state name, for example, or a street name.