Google launches Timelapse

Posted by Melanie van Zyl on 13 May 2013

All those years of Google Earth has resulted in some of the most incredible time lapses you’re likely to see.

Timelapse powered by Google shows how the Earth’s surface has changed by collecting footage from 1984 until today and sped up the process for us to enjoy.

According to the authorities, NASA created the Landsat program, a series of satellites to eternally orbit our planet, looking down on the progress of the Earth. Landsat was built for the public to monitor how the human species was altering the surface of the planet.

Two generations, eight satellites and millions of pictures later we have a vast accumulation of images that create one of the most intriguing movies ever shown.

Google gives us a variety of time lapses that show processes such as the development of Dubai, growing from sparse desert to modern city and the high-speed retreat of Mendenhall Glacier in Alaska and the waning forests of the Amazon.

Of course, it wasn’t easy. They tell us:

The Google team had to scrub away cloud cover, fill in missing pixels and digitally stitch it all together, until the growing, thriving, sometimes dying planet is revealed in all its dynamic churn. The images are striking not just because of their vast sweep of geography and time but also because of their staggering detail. Consider: a standard TV image uses about one-third of a million pixels per frame, while a high-definition image uses 2 million. The Landsat images, by contrast, weigh in at 1.8 trillion pixels per frame, the equivalent of 900,000 high-def TVs assembled into a single mosaic.

The images and ‘videos’ are both beautiful and startling. To see the progress of humankind and the subsequent changes we’ve made to the planet – some of them irreversible – has been a real journey over the past 28 years. It’s both hard to watch and impossible to look away.

Watch the timelapses captured by Google here 



Sourced from and Ubergizmo

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