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Google's set to map a new frontier: The human body

Sharon Gaudin | Dec. 20, 2010
Forget Google Earth and Google Maps, the company now has a tool for mapping the human anatomy

FRAMINGHAM, 17 DECEMBER 2010 - Think of Google Earth and the human body.

Google Earth and Google Maps have long helped been helping people search for and map streets, towns and even the universe and its oceans. Now the company is looking to do the same thing on a more micro level.

It may sound a bit strange, but Google on Thursday launched tool to provide users with a layered, 3D view of the human anatomy. Called Body Browser , the new feature uses zoom and pan controls, much like those in Google Earth and Google Maps, to explore the internals of the human body.

Body Browser, developed in Google Labs, does not run on just any browser. Users will need a browser that supports the new WebGL graphics standard. Those include Google Chrome and the latest Firefox beta.

The feature is designed to let users identify various parts of the human body, while also search for bones, organs and muscles. It also lets users rotate a 3D image of the body, peel away skin and investigate the different layers inside.

The new feature comes after Google Earth and Google Maps has become some of the company's most popular features.

In 2009, the company updated Google Earth to enable users to get a much more detailed digital look at the planet's oceans, as well as to add a 3D map of Mars.

For the Mars map, Google collaborated with NASA to get high-resolution imagery.


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