Google Earth Enterprise to become open source in March
Google has announced that it is open sourcing its Earth Enterprise software in March 2017. With this development, organisations will be able to deploy Google Maps and the 3D view of Google Earth on their on-premise data centre infrastructure.
Originally introduced in 2006, Google Earth Enterprise (GEE) was being sold by the search giant till 2015. It was designed to let enterprise customers build and host their private, on-premise versions of Google Earth and Maps. But now, Google has given a two-year maintenance period to the customers to help them transition.
After the transition, Google’s team is set to release the source code of the Earth Enterprise suite on GitHub under an Apache 2 licence. The open source package will include GEE Fusion, GEE Server and
GEE Portable Server. “Open sourcing
GEE allows our customer community to continue to improve and evolve the project in perpetuity,” Avnish Bhatnagar, senior technical solutions engineer, Google Cloud, wrote in a blog post.
The imagery and terrain quadtree implementations used in the enterprise products will help third-party developers build viewers that can consume GEE Server Databases. This will enable
Google to expand its presence among developers and enterprises.
Open sourcing server software will affect software providers in the same space, such as Esri or ArcGIS Server. But developers would ultimately get a chance to switch to Google’s solutions for providing their custom maps and 3D globes.