Earth - The Blue Marble
Average Rating: 9
Yours: -1
File Size: 7.51MB
Downloads Today: 0 Downloads Total: 13492

Earth - The Blue Marble

Updated Aug 16, 2004 by Will Rose

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Will Rose
Comment #1 Tuesday, August 17, 2004 2:58 AM
I could do a collection of "Planetary Zoomers" though. They wouldn't rotate or anything, but they would expand/contract on mouseover like a normal zoomer.

If you'd like zoomers, let me know. If you're after the full-motion revolving planets, see my post below.

It would be nice if Stardock would allow "IconX" type functionality for an animated DX object, so that the rotating planets could expand/shrink seamlessly on mouseover. Is anyone from Stardock listening?

Comment #2 Tuesday, August 17, 2004 9:43 AM
If you made a moon object, you should release it and the earth as a pack, set up so that the moon went back and forth in front and behind the earth so that it looked like it was orbiting....that would be cool.

This is inctredible work! Thanks for the great object.
Will Rose
Comment #3 Tuesday, August 17, 2004 5:37 PM
CerebroJD, shall I assume you'd like the orbital calculations synchronized with the moon's rotation, so it always shows the same side to Earth, as in real life? And do I have to make the earth wobble around the barycenter???

Also what about scale? If I make the orbital distance to accurate scale with the diameter of the earth and moon, they're have to be pretty small (less than 20 pixels) to fit on one monitor...
Comment #4 Tuesday, August 17, 2004 10:50 PM
It would be cool to have an object where you can your place on earth and then it shows a high resolution picture of the earth with correct lighting situation - dark after sunset.
Comment #5 Tuesday, August 17, 2004 10:50 PM
Oh and a moving model of the solar system would be great too
Dresden Sinn
Comment #6 Wednesday, August 18, 2004 3:58 PM
Nice! Goes well with my Spiderman2 Theme. I look forward to the MooN. Too bad Mars isn't possible, that would go great with a DooM3 Theme.

Will Rose
Comment #7 Wednesday, August 18, 2004 5:40 PM
All these kind words and still only an 8? ( I promise to make a moon object if someone will bump me up to a 9!
Dresden Sinn
Comment #8 Thursday, August 19, 2004 2:35 PM
I'd bump ya up to a 10 if I knew where the heck the ratings are...I don't see anywhere to rate...?
Comment #9 Thursday, August 19, 2004 9:17 PM
(I hope this doesn't post twice...)

Beautiful and well-executed eye-candy. Although not much more use than a souped-up icon, it is still fascinating and shows off the hidden power of DX. Worth at least a 9 to me!

Note: Stardock are building an entire app (IconX) around souped-up icons, so my comment is not a knock.

Comment #10 Thursday, August 19, 2004 10:46 PM
Dresden: It's right above the the box where you type in your comments.
Comment #11 Friday, August 20, 2004 10:36 AM
Very sweet graphics! I've used the spinning globe from DX since I've been using DX, but now I will use this one. Did you add the light flare/spot to the graphics? (The one just to the left and above of the center) It seems a little distracting to me, especially when it passes over the oceans.

I'd definitely be interested in something like this of the moon or planetary zoomers as well.

Nice work....

Will Rose
Comment #12 Friday, August 20, 2004 5:37 PM
Jeff: No offense taken, as I said in the description, it serves no purpose other than to look pretty. Except as a shortcut, it's pretty useless, but I still think it's cool.

Carpe: The lightflare is atmospheric refraction of sunlight (glare)reflected by the water towards the observer. On celestial bodies that lack either atmosphere or water, it wouldn't be there. If you have both atmosphere and water, and illumination is provided by an intense point source (like the sun) you get that kind of flare. You'll see if I do Venus or Mars that it won't be there, because they have atmospheres but lack water. Also, there isn't flare from the moon, since it lacks both.

I see I made it to a 9 today! Thanks everybody! I'm really glad you enjoy it.

(I don't like to post anything that's not worth a 9 or a 10. I was beginning to worry this one wasn't up to snuff. I try to make my stuff as high-quality as possible, thus I don't do very many submissions.)
Firedogs Ron Son Jose
Comment #13 Saturday, August 21, 2004 4:15 PM
It's on our desktop now! Would like one twice that size.
Comment #14 Sunday, August 22, 2004 11:12 AM

Thanks for the explanation of the light flare.

I was thinking it would also be cool to have a similar spinning globe using the Global City Lights satellite pictures from
I don't know how easy it would be to map it to a sphere though....

Will Rose
Comment #15 Sunday, August 22, 2004 11:37 AM
Carpe: Mapping it isn't the problem. The problem is that you can't really animate a very large object smoothly (CPU or DX constraints?), so you have to shrink it down to something manageable, like less than 200 pixels high. By the time you've done that, the nice little pinpoints are just a yellow smear. I did a sample run, and I had a black sphere, with recognizeable continents, with yellow smears on them. (basically a 3-color image). Honestly it didn't look very nice, and it wasn't up to my standards for release.

_Mabey_ (but I doubt it the original of this is high res, it's the shrinking that kills) with a higher quality source image the situation would improve, but I haven't seen one that's suitable.
Comment #16 Tuesday, August 24, 2004 7:05 PM
Would love to haveIE . I could produce one at up to 1000x1000 pixels, but I doubt any PC is capable of animating that at 40fps....and yes DL no problem on a T1 server and yes could run at up to 60-80 frames,at the high resolution,,,, Glenn ,,,nice to watch spinning around LOL,,good Job indeed,,,,,
Comment #17 Tuesday, August 24, 2004 9:12 PM

Thanks for looking into doing the lights globe. I see your point about losing the detail when it's reduced in size.
Will Rose
Comment #18 Friday, August 27, 2004 11:43 AM
For everyone that asked for the moon, check out "LunaVista" or "Phase of the Moon" now available at Not only do they show you the actual phase of the moon each night, but LunaVista is animated with the same quality as this object. Enjoy!
Comment #19 Sunday, August 29, 2004 5:47 PM
can u maybe make it a ani gif and put it on like deviantart or something
Will Rose
Comment #20 Sunday, August 29, 2004 9:26 PM
Mo619, the answer is no. The GIF format does not provide the required alpha channel. This animation cannot be properly rendered in that format.

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