This is the second HowTo about tours of a 3 part set. It builds on Creating Tours HowTo 1, In this HowTo we learn how to turn elements on and off in a tour.
Adding Elements: A more advanced tour than we previously discussed uses elements (e.g. placemarks, ground overlays, polygons) in the places column which are turned on and off to illustrate the topic of the tour. The Goldman prize example (screen shot above) plays in the Google Earth plugin, if you haven't got it there's a link to get the google earth file instead. It uses placemarks but you can use more sophisticated elements as in this Lake Chad Example which uses screen and ground overlays for text and to show the shrinking lake respectively.
To construct a tour turning elements on and off:
- Create a new empty folder (right click temporary places in your places column > Add > Folder). Name it something sensible.
- Copy the elements you want to appear in it from elsewhere in the places column (right click the element, then select copy, select your new folder, select paste) or create new elements within the folder.
- Untick any original elements you have just duplicated in their original location in the places column and all the elements in your new folder.
- Record the tour turning elements on and off but only from your new folder.
- When you have finished the tour click the stop button in the tour dialogue. The tour will play itself automatically but the elements will not appear as there's a bug. The workaround is to save the tour (floppy disk icon in the record dialogue bottom left of your screen), name it something sensible and then play it again - it should now work.
- Drag the tour element that you've just created in the places column into the new folder if it isn't there already.
- Make sure all the elements are turned off and save the new folder as a .kmz file (right click>Save As). Google Earth records the visibility of your placemarks when saving a .kmz so the tour will automatically open with the elements unselected, by doing this you avoid the problem mentioned in .
The camera viewpoints discussed in the previous post can be used as before, but note that it is not necessary to save any camera viewpoint placemarks in the new folder, their location is stored in the tour part recording automatically of the KMZ. Removing them from the folder is good practices as it unclutters the view in the Places column.
Adding Text Notes: You can add placemark text notes to your tour by adding placemarks and opening them in a tour. For example, if I was producing a tour of the Southampton University campus I could mark the School of Geography building with a Placemark called 'Geography'. In the description I could add detail such as 'We run a successful program of Undergraduate, Masters level and continuing professional development courses'. In the tour I would fly to view the building, make the placemark appear by ticking its box in the places column. When the users had had time to register what the placemark's name is (a couple of seconds) I would then click it in the main screen to make the description appear.