firefox google earth requires non free software?

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tonlee
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Iscritto: 09/08/2014

One piece of non free software I used to install was google earth. Then
I decided to not install it. I would then run google earth in
firefox. It is not as smooth at all.
Then google earth stopped working in firefox. It did not work in
chromium either. Now it works in firefox again.

If you run google earth or map in firefox, does it require
non free software?
If so, then you cannot watch google earth without non free
software?

I think it will be difficult to get a free software version of
google earth. Having the same quality as google earth. To
my knowledge some privacy focused search machines use
data from google. Why does google accept that? Because those
search machines have a low number of users and google does not
bother? Would it be an option to organize a kind of proxy
server system about google earth.
You would then install a piece of free software on your computer
which would not call google earth but a server which would
then get the data from google earth.

SuperTramp83

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Iscritto: 10/31/2014

>If you run google earth or map in firefox, does it require
non free software?

Of course it does, their proprietary javascrip needs to be allowed for it to work.

Magic Banana

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Iscritto: 07/24/2010

The Free Software Foundation deem a free Google Earth Replacement high-priority: https://www.fsf.org/campaigns/priority-projects/free-google-earth-replacement

I do not know if anybody is working on that project.

gd_scania
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Iscritto: 09/13/2017

Try Marble, that’s KDE virtual globe using OpenStreetMap protocols. :)

zigote
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Iscritto: 03/04/2019

> If so, then you cannot watch google earth without non free
software?

On the client side it would may possible if a FOSS client is using the Google Maps API. I remember finding on GitHub some free python apps which do that but I never tried them. You can research and share your findings.

BTW there is a python client (Apache 2 License) by Google too:

https://github.com/googlemaps/google-maps-services-python

However it requires a Google Maps API key and you would have to run non-free JS on Google's sites (and perhaps have a G account) to get one.

> To my knowledge some privacy focused search machines use
data from google. Why does google accept that?

Perhaps they don't accept but rather don't restrict it too much. Searx sometimes hits Google captcha (in the backend) and displays an error about not being able to pull results.

tonlee
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Iscritto: 09/08/2014

> may possible if a FOSS client is using the Google Maps API.

Would that be like the non free desktop google earth application?

zigote
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Iscritto: 03/04/2019

What it would be like would depend on the functionality which the programmer has programmed.

Masaru Suzuqi
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Iscritto: 06/06/2018

Google Earth was one of the few exciting applications.
I felt freedom like in virtual travelling. I got tired of that quite soon somehow, though. Maybe because it was too slow then. About 15 years ago.

Masaru Suzuqi
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Iscritto: 06/06/2018

Is there like a google earth free replacement app?

-Served the basic 3D map of the whole world.
-People can make 3D objects freely on the part of the map. Even kids can do it easy with fun.
But we have the common purpose that modeling real streets. As real as possible, like modern movies is preferable for me.
-Then we can make our own virtual figures, then can walk on the virtual map and chat with other people. and shopping, too.
-Expected troubles were solved by good ideas and education already. Those troubles were taken the advantage to educate something ideology or philosophy.
Kids can learn e.g. pricacy issues from the troubles. But with fun! (important)

If there is, I want to do that. Just thought, though.

zigote
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Iscritto: 03/04/2019

There is no replacement. There are alternatives which are more limited because Google (Earth, Maps, Street View) has data which the alternatives don't.

Masaru Suzuqi
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Iscritto: 06/06/2018

>There is no replacement.

The ghost whispered me. What about Gnu Earth?

tonlee
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Iscritto: 09/08/2014

> What it would be like

I ask for a purely technical assessment. Not what a given programmer can do. But if an equally free
version of the google earth desktop software can get made?

zigote
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Iscritto: 03/04/2019

> I ask for a purely technical assessment.

That's what I answered.

>> What it would be like would depend on the functionality which the programmer has programmed.

means what the programmer HAS done (not what he CAN do).

> But if an equally free version of the google earth desktop software can get made?

I don't know what you mean by "equally free". GE is free as in beer. In case you mean "equally functional to GE but free as in FSF freedom" - it should be possible as the API allows access to the same data which GE uses.

Magic Banana

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Iscritto: 07/24/2010

Within ten minutes, there will be a talk at LibrePlanet about APIs (in room 32-155). Shaun Carland will be "using the Google Maps API as a case study, we will examine the ethical and technological implications of providing open, but not free, access to an API": https://libreplanet.org/2019/program/

andyprough
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Iscritto: 02/12/2015

Have you considered using marble? It's a KDE package with a large number of dependencies. I'm not going to install it to try it out, but I've read that it has many of the same features as google earth. https://marble.kde.org/

"Explore the neighborhood with Marble's rich set of city and street level maps. Search for addresses and places of interest. Marble takes care of querying various search backends and presents their results in a unified view. Calculate pedestrian, bike and motorcar routes with ease — online and offline, with an arbitrary number of via points."

"Start exploring the world. View clouds and sun shadow, follow satellites and space stations and display their orbits, all updated in real-time. Travel back in time and learn about historic views of our planet using maps from past centuries. Earth is not enough? Marble also offers maps of the moon and other planets."

Should be all libre software. Uses OpenStreetMap apparently.

chaosmonk

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Iscritto: 07/07/2017

These are the OpenStreetMap clients I have experience with. I don't use Google Earth, so I don't know if any one of these is a complete replacement, but they are each useful for something. These are all web or desktop clients. I have no use for and so have not tried any mobile clients. Also, I am basing this off of my experience with the versions in the Trisquel and Hyperbola repos, so it's possible that newer versions have more features.

(1) https://www.openstreetmap.org/
- Browsing maps: Looks usable, but not fancy.
- Getting directions: Can search by and generate routes between addresses, but not very well.
- Drawbacks: Kind of crappy, requires patience, can't store and use maps offline.
- Advantages: Works in-browser.
- When to use: If you are borrowing a friend's or library's computer and can't install gnome-maps.

(2) gnome-maps
- Browsing maps: Looks usable, but not fancy.
- Getting directions: Can search by and generate routes between addresses quite well.
- Drawbacks: Can't store and use maps offline.
- Advantages: Good address search and routing.
- When to use: Whenever you would otherwise use openstreetmaps.org but have the option of installing gnome-maps instead.

(3) marble
- Browsing maps: Looks fancy.
- Getting directions: Can search by and generate routes between cities, but not addresses.
- Drawbacks: Inability to search by address makes it kind of useless for getting directions.
- Advantages: Can store and use maps offline.
- When to use: Probably good for exploring maps online or offline, but gnome-maps would be better for getting directions.

(4) navit
- Browsing maps: Not its purpose.
- Getting directions: Can not only find and route between addresses, but with GPS can be used for navigation.
- Drawbacks: Can't find a city or any addresses within unless the borders are defined in a certain way. This can be a real problem.
- Advantages: Can store maps of line and provide on-screen and spoken navigation.
- When to use: When driving I'll sometimes plug my USB GPS receiver into my laptop and use Navit for spoken directions.

Unfortunately I have yet to find a client that can do it all:
- good address search and routing
- ability to store and use maps offline
- good interface for browsing maps
- offline on-screen and spoken navigation

andyprough
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Iscritto: 02/12/2015

There's actually a way to download tiles from OSM to a directory and use them by invoking Gnome maps from the command line:
gnome-maps --local ~/Directory/To/Map/Tiles/

It's been available since gnome-maps 3.18. The dev has written more instructions here: https://jonasdn.blogspot.com/2015/09/using-offline-local-tiles-with-gnome.html

I decided one night to try and do it, but downloading and categorizing thousands of tiles was quite a bit more effort than I was willing to go through. Maybe there's some way to do it easier now - the dev says something about using a script, but doesn't give a link to it. There's a pretty cool video of him using offline maps here: https://invidio.us/watch?time_continue=2&v=oZkJhC_vjgY

aloniv

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Iscritto: 01/11/2011

Also FoxtrotGPS is an OpenStreetMap client.

chaosmonk

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Have you tried it? I'm looking at their site[1] now. No on-screen or spoken directions yet, and apparently the route calculation is done server-side, so it doesn't work without an Internet connection, so it's not useful to me but might be to someone else. This server-side route calculation seems like SaaSS though, since that's normally done client-side (at least for free software map clients, Google/Waze/Apple probably do it server-side too).

[1] https://www.foxtrotgps.org/doc/foxtrotgps.html

chaosmonk

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I was just reading about NASA WhirlWind.[1][2] It seems similar to Google Earth, in that it allows you to explore a virtual globe.

Some parts of the project appear to be under Apache 2.0, which is free, while others are under NOSA, which is "open source" but non-free[3] due to a restriction on use with third-party code. I don't understand the structure of the project well enough to know whether the free components are useful on their own.

Apparently NASA is shutting it down in two days. There is a third-party effort to preserve it called WorldWind Earth.[4] All of that code appears to be under free licenses.[5]

That's all I know. I don't personally need a program like this, but I came across it randomly today and thought I'd share it here. If anyone here is interested it might be worth investigating to see if WorldWind Earth can be used in freedom.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NASA_WorldWind
[2] https://github.com/NASAWorldWind
[3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NASA_Open_Source_Agreement
[4] https://worldwind.earth/#nasa-worldwind-project-suspension
[5] https://github.com/NASAWorldWind/WorldWindServerKit