Collaborate with Google Earth

Share your KMZ Files

KML is a file format used to display geographic data in an Earth browser, such as Google Earth, Google Maps, and Google Maps for mobile. KML uses a tag-based structure with nested elements and attributes and is based on the XML standard.

KML stands for Keyhole Markup Language (Keyhole was the name of the application before Google bought it and added their own features and larger databases). If you understand HTML/XML you will have little problem understanding the syntax of KML. You can learn about KML from the KML Tutorial, or get the full details from the KML Documentation.

KMZ stands for KML-Zipped. It is the default format for KML because it is a compressed version of the file. One of the more powerful features of KMZ is that it allows any images you use — say custom icons, or images in your descriptions — to be zipped up within the KMZ file. That way you can share these details without having to reference the files through some link to the Internet.

Places People have Shared

Now you can look at the places quoted in Shakespeare (85 placemarks). Someone from France with the User-ID "H21" posted the placemarks at the Google Earth Community.

Save the KMZ file onto your computer and then open the file to open Google Earth (that is, if you have it installed on your computer). The links and placemarks will appear in your Places on Google Earth.

Click on any of the links or placemarks to view the description. Note also that there are Google Book Searches on the topic "Shakespeare" and Google Groups that discuss Shakespearean plays.

Jerome Burg, a Google Certified Teacher and Language Arts High School teacher in Livermore, California, developed Google Lit Trips as an experiment in teaching literature in a very different way. His students create and share KMZ files about authors, plays, stories, podcasts, and more. Keep an eye on where his students take their next trips.

Check out my Google Project where I put up loads of tips on Google Tools.

Next Tip: TBA