next generation of Sky in Google Earth

Roy Williams roy at
Tue Jan 22 07:43:56 PST 2008

> Google has given us a new IVOA standard, it's KML, and we'd better get 
> used to the idea.  Possibly the IVOA should accept the status quo and 
> officially adopt it. It might give us a (very) little bit more leverage.
This I find a strange set of statements. Google has not "given us" anything. Rather I would say they have made a somewhat ropy standard without external consultation, a standard that does not carry rich metadata and has very poor image support. Obviously we astronomers are forced into using this hand-me-down from the geo people, because Google has billions of dollars and billions of customers.

As for official adoption, my understanding is that Google has handed over the KML process to the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC), who will be creating future versions -- this time with input from the rest of the world. I am not sure that IVOA should be making Recommendations on KML: what happens if these are different from the OGC version?

Surely what we need is not just a blanket Recommendation of KML as it exists now, but rather VO representation at the OGC meetings? Does anyone know anyone at OGC?



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