GOOGLE EARTH TIPS AND TRICKS

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					                                  GOOGLE EARTH TIPS AND TRICKS
Google Earth can be downloaded for free from the internet, at the following location: http://earth.google.com/ .
Google Earth is a very user friendly application which allows you to view geographic data against a background of
high resolution satellite imagery.

The Shelter Cluster has assembled a collection of ‘layers’ of information which may be of use to partners, into one
Google Earth KMZ file. An explanation of these layers is given below

This document also contains a few hints and tips to help cluster partners to use these layers, and to carry out a
few simple tasks that may help you to:

         Locate where you have distributed shelter materials
         Locate what commune or section communal you have been working in
         Communicate general areas over which you are operating
         Share planning information on transitional shelter projects

This document is split into the following sections:

1. SHELTER CLUSTER GOOGLE EARTH LAYERS
2. LOOKING UP COORDINATES USING GOOGLE EARTH
3. LOOKING UP THE SSID OF A CAMP IN WHICH YOU ARE WORKING
4. CREATING POINTS
5. CREATING AREAS
6. ARRANGING DATA INTO FOLDERS
7. EXPORTING LAYERS


1. SHELTER CLUSTER GOOGLE EARTH LAYERS

Below is a list of the layer that you will find in the shelter cluster KMZ file, which you will find for download on our
website.

Emergency Shelter and NFI :
    Emergency shelter distribution locations *
    NFI distribution locations *
       * For those distributions reported to us with GPS coordinates, we have mapped these and created two
       layers of information – one for emergency shelter distribution, and one for NFI distributions.
    Agency managed camps (limited information supplied so far by partners)
    Agency distribution areas : where partners have indicated a geographic area over which they are
       operating,
    Shelter needs : this is a thematic layer representing the overall number of households with shelter needs
       per commune, as per the Government of Haiti data (currently 1.3m
    Remaining shelter needs :

Transitional shelter : This section is for T-shelter planning information. At the moment, this mostly covers
         Leogane, Gressier, Petit Goave and Grand Goave areas, though this will be updated with more
         information for Port-au-Prince as agencies submit more detailed planning information.
     Planned area for t-shelter projects
     Locations of agency t-shelter assessments
     Rubble dump sites
     Trash dump sites

Administrative boundaries
    Department boundaries: Ouest and Sud Est Departments
        Commune boundaries
        Section Communal boundaries

Spontaneous settlements
     OCHA Spontaneous settlements v2: This is a layer of point data representing camp locations, which has
       been compiled by OCHA



2. LOOKING UP COORDINATES USING GOOGLE EARTH

Want to know where you carried out a distribution, but don’t have a GPS unit, or forgot to use it? Just look it up
in Google Earth!

Open Google Earth, and navigate to the area where you have been working. (You can use the ‘fly to’ box near the
top left of the screen to get you to the right area, such as ‘Delmas, Haiti’.




 If you are not very familiar with the geography of the area, you may find it useful to switch on Google Earth’s
road layer, so that you can see road names. You’ll find this in the ‘layers box at the bottom left of the screen:




Once you have navigated to the place where you have been working, you can look up the coordinates by simply
pointing the cursor at the screen, and reading off the coordinates shown at the bottom of the screen:




By default, these coordinates will be shown as degrees, minutes and seconds.

Want to see decimal degrees, or degrees and decimal minutes? Just go to the tools menu, then options, and in
the tab ‘3D view’, you can change the way that the coordinates are shown :
3. LOOKING UP THE SSID OF A CAMP IN WHICH YOU ARE WORKING

In order to allow reported data from multiple agencies across many clusters to be consolidated
in a meaningful way, a master list of spontaneous settlements has been created, each with a
unique ID. As camps do not all have a unique name which is being consistently used, giving
each camp a unique number should allow data to always still be associated back to it’s correct
location.

To this end, OCHA have been compiling a master list, and assigning these unique identifiers, or
‘SSID’ (Spontaneous Site IDs). This is an ongoing task which is not yet fully completed, and
which may also change over time. The second version of this set of spontaneous sites is
available within the shelter cluster kmz, and contains over 600 camp locations.

By reporting to the cluster using this SSID, it will be possible for us to form a much clearer
picture of what distributions have been done in what sites. You can look up the SSID of a site in
which you have been working, by switching on this layer in the ‘places’ section of your screen:
If you zoom in to the area where you are working, you will be able to see if it exists already
(look for the blue triangles), and if so, what it’s SSID is. Just hover the cursor over a point to see
the SSID, or click on it to see more details still.




4. CREATING POINTS

Want to create your own set of points? Zoom in to the area that you want to mark, and simply click on this icon at
the top of the screen:




A ‘pushpin’ will appear in the centre of the map window. If it is not in quite the right location, you can simply drag
and drop it to the right location. You’ll also see here that you can see the exact coordinates of this point. A
dialogue box will also appear – you should rename the location from ‘Untitled Placemark’ to something more
meaningful to you, then click ‘OK’ to save it. You can also add a description to the placemark, which people will
also be able to access when they look at your data.
This point will now be saved in your ‘temporary places’. This is a layer which you will find within your ‘places’ on
the left hand side of the screen:




Want to change what your marker looks like? Just right click on the placemarker, and select ‘properties’. You will
then be able to choose from a much wider selection of markers.




When you go to close Google Earth, you will be asked if you want to save items in your
‘temporary places’ to your ‘my places’. This is the same as saving a document; if you want to
be able to see these layers again, you should select ‘yes’


5. CREATING AREAS

Want to create your own polygons (areas)? Zoom to the location where you want to draw a
polygon, and just click on this button at the top of the screen:
Your cursor will turn into a square, with a crosshair. You can either draw freestyle, or draw one
vertex at a time. To draw freestyle, just hold down the left mouse button and draw a shape
using the mouse. Release the mouse button when you have finished drawing the area. Or, if
you want to create one vertex at a time, just left click the mouse button once to create a
vertex. You can also do a combination of these two moves. Once you are happy with the shape
of your polygon, rename it in the dialogue box, and click ‘OK’ on that box.




This will again now be saved to your temporary places:




You can also change the appearance of the polygon, again by right clicking the item and
choosing ‘properties’. You can set different colours for the border and for the fill colour, and
set the fill to be partly transparent if you want.
When you go to close Google Earth, you will be asked if you want to save items in your
‘temporary places’ to your ‘my places’. This is the same as saving a document; if you want to
be able to see these layers again, you should select ‘yes’


6. ARRANGING DATA INTO FOLDERS

Once you start creating points and polygons, you may want to start arranging them into
folders. You can do this in the ‘places’ area. Right click in the place where you would like to
create a folder, and select ‘add’ the ‘folder’. This area works in the same way as windows
explorer – you can create folders, then drag items into folders. This allow you to structure your
data in a meaningful way.




7. EXPORTING LAYERS

When you want to share your data with others, all you need to do is to right click on the layer
you want to export, and select ‘Save place as’. Just then give the file a name. This will save as a
‘KMZ’ file, which anyone can open if they have Google earth installed on their computer. It will
be displayed for them in exactly the same way as it is displayed for you. You can right click on a
folder containing many points and polygons, and even many individual layers of information
and sub folders. All of these will be packaged into one ‘kmz’ file.




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