Google Earth’s time lapse videos of earth’s landscape could make you think about the great baseball player Yogi Berra.
“I thought about one of the quotes attributed to Yogi Berra,” says Marc Levy, a political scientist at Columbia University’s Earth Institute who specializes in issues of global health and development. “He said, ‘You can observe a lot just by watching.'”
To show just how much the Earth’s landscape has changed over the past three decades, Google sifted through 5 million satellite images containing three quadrillion pixels. The result is a series of high-resolution, zoomable time-lapse videos that capture, in unprecedented detail, the human impact on this planet.
By collapsing 33 years of satellite imagery into three or four second clips, Google Earth’s time-lapse videos give us a “very tangible sense of how large changes can unfold quickly,” Levy says.
Hover over Dubai, for example, and you’ll see the desert transform into a metropolis. “And you can see…