Google is releasing new versions for Google Earth for both professionals and casual users today.
The blog announcing the release is here.
It looks pretty cool. The big change is in its enhanced GPS tracking ability. In version 5, Google allowed you to connect your GPS to Google Earth and import your track. In version 5.2, you can now also see elevation, speed and other data as a graph.
Playing back the trip becomes more interesting by clicking on the time animation button. That brings up an icon that represents you, which then moves through the landscape that you traveled. It's like "fly[ing] along your journey from a bird's eye view," says Dan Barcay, a software engineer who worked on the new version, in his blog entry.
Both blog entries show animations to demonstrate the new tracking ability, and give instructions on how to use it.
The Pro version adds:
Download it at http://earth.google.com