Photo Gallery Berlin Goes Virtual

Berlin on Thursday became the first city in the world to create an almost complete 3D image of itself in Google Earth.
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The Reichstag in Berlin. The new 3D Berlin works only with the newest version of Google Earth. There are some problems yet -- like floating buildings.

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / SPIEGEL ONLINE
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The Gendarmenmarkt in Berlin. A plug-in makes it possible. Head to the Berlin 3D site through the link in the story, click on the link and follow the instructions.

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / Business Location Center Berlin-Brandenburg
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Berlin is proud to be the first city available in 3D. Here, the Lustgarten, the "Red City Hall" and the TV tower on Alexanderplatz.

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / Business Location Center Berlin-Brandenburg
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The Gedächtniskirche in the western part of Berlin. Eventually, 3D Berlin will come complete with a historical tour of the city.

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / Business Location Center Berlin-Brandenburg
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The Brandenburg Gate. Not all buildings are 3D yet. But the most famous ones have already been transformed.

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / Business Location Center Berlin-Brandenburg
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The Berlin Central Station. In order to open the program, one has to open a kmz file through Google Earth which then accesses the data.

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / Business Location Center Berlin-Brandenburg
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Sony Center on Potsdamer Platz is one of the few buildings which online visitors can actually enter and explore.

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / Business Location Center Berlin-Brandenburg
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Like the train station for example. Here it is from the outside...

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / SPIEGEL ONLINE
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... and here from the inside.

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / SPIEGEL ONLINE
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Some buildings are already in 3D. So as not to confuse Google Earth, deactivate the option 3D buildings before checking out 3D Berlin.

Foto: GoogleEarth / 3Dgeo / SPIEGEL ONLINE
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Hamburg was supposed to be the first city to go 3D and announced its project on January 17. But the city has had data protection problems, allowing Berlin to beat it out.

Foto: Cyber City/Hamburg
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The Hamburg project is to be a mash-up between 3D models and aerial photos. So far though, only screenshots of the project are in circulation.

Foto: Cyber City/Hamburg
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The Hamburg project will integrate over 1,000 aerial photos of the city.

Foto: Cyber City/Hamburg
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There are other cities in the world that already exist as 3D models, like New York. But the building facades are missing.

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Microsoft, too, is entering the 3D game, as announced in January at the CES in Las Vegas. Microsoft Virtual Earth now has a 3D function, demonstrated at the convention by Bill Gates, with a virtual flight over the Las Vegas Strip.

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The Reichstag in Berlin as seen with the Berlin 3D software. A total of 50 buildings were recreated with CAD software. The original program costs €50.

Foto: www.realitymaps.de