KML and KMZ Files
I recently received an email from one of our CFedS Traverse PC users in Arizona about using KML and KMZ files (KMZ files are compressed versions of KML files) in Google Earth. This email was eye-opening for me.
He sends his field crews out with a Google Earth file on their smart phones so they can launch the file in Google Earth as a tool to help them visually locate the areas they need to be in. This gives them an interactive tool right there in the field. This is invaluable to the field crews. Once I understood what he is doing and why, I realized the potential importance of KMZ files.
So what are KML and KMZ files?
To see how KML files work, take a look at John Balcom’s article in our May eNewsletter. There is even a KML file you can download to see how it works. TPC Desktop 2015 R1 (available only to our TPC Connection members) currently supports the export and import of KML files. (We can import KML files that were created with Traverse PC.)
What about KMZ files? KMZ files are a compressed version of a KML file. They work exactly the same as KML files do but they are significantly smaller. In a test we ran here, we exported a KML file that was 28 KB. The same file exported as a KMZ file was only 3 KB. That is nearly a 90% reduction in size and is a significant saving of storage space on devices that have limited storage capacity.
Based on this, Oliver Bochsler added support for the KMZ file format to TPC Desktop 2015 R1. We should have this new update out to our TPC Connection members sometime next week. This is just one more advantage to joining the TPC Connection – we respond quickly to the needs or our customers.
Mark Lull, Technical Support Manager