Travel Trends – Disney, Writing Travelers, TripWolf
Disney Goes 3D – Ever since Google purchased SketchUp, bloggers have speculated on what combinations were possible…the most often quoted was a Google version of Second Life. Disney has taken advantage of this technology and created the entire Walt Disney World Resort complex in an extensive 3D layer in Google Earth. How extensive you wonder? …included significant amounts of real-world objects such as a monorail, picnic tables, benches, streetlights, signs, and trees. LOTS of trees. As in thousands of them!… Yeah, extensive. The 3D layer is simply amazing, I can only speculate how many hundreds hours this took.
Of course, someone out there is thinking, ‘well, with in the park in 3D, would this reduce attendance?’ You laugh, but I have heard those questions asked. The obvious answer would be no. I will (safely) assume this new feature will only further encourage travel to Disney World, give consumers a better idea of what is available at each park, greatly assist travel agents and generate a ton of press.
Would this apply to your community and CVB? Possibly, there are some communities who are actively adding there city to Google Earth, such as Westport, Ireland. And Google is encouraging participation via the Cities in 3D Program. However, most of these 3D buildings are created by 3D building enthusiasts (3D nerds). So, find so local computer science majors at your local college / high school, send them the ‘How To Video‘ and get your city on the map. If it is not already there.
WritingTravellers – More wiki, social, online-to-print guides. Are you seeing a trend here? WritingTravellers takes the co-authored travel guide beyond the wiki (or website) such as WikiTravel.org and allows visitors to print a copy of the travel guide book they helped create. Perfect for those people who think they could do it better. The site is still in beta and has limited content at this point, however it is another important example and project that begins to layout the future of the travel guide.
TripWolf – Speaking of social travel, TripWolf, which we posted about a few days ago (Random Thoughts: Travel 2.0 and TripWolf), has launched into public beta…meaning you can go explore the site. In addition, the team at TripWolf announced that MairDumont, probably most well known on this side of the Atlantic for the Marco Polo travel guide series, is backing the effort by ‘taken the unprecedented step of putting all of its high-quality content – covering more than 200,000 destinations and points of interest – online for free.’ So, let’s read that again, a major travel guide publishing house is planning on putting all of it’s content onto a social travel site and allowing consumers to access it for free. I knew it, there is a trend here!