Global Seer Peter Birch

Oct 5, 2009
Outside Magazine
Peter Birch

   Photo: Photograph by Gabriela Hasbun

G-Star Correct peacoat ($350); J.Crew Merino graphite-stripe V-neck sweater ($62); Banana Republic Fitted cotton crew ($20); J Brand jeans ($227); Fluevog Future Angel Charles shoes ($125)

Ask Birch any question about Google Earth and he'll work his way back to two themes: making it more powerful and more accessible. This for a program that has already been downloaded more than 500 million times and fundamentally changed the way we plan our adventures. Birch, 41, who has degrees in engineering and business, took over product management in 2006. Since then, Google Earth has introduced ocean imagery, the moon and Mars (Google Solar System?), 3-D models of cities, historical imagery, and the project's most stunning development since its launch, Google Earth for iPhone. "Five years ago, the idea of being able to hold this in a device in your hand was a fantasy," he says. "It happened sooner than we thought imaginable." Birch's long-term dream is to create a "mirror world that accurately reflects everything." His main tool: you. "The most powerful part of Google Earth is that it's a platform," he says. "Anyone who has geographic information can make it available."

More at Outside

Elsewhere on the Web

Not Now

Need a Gear Fix?

Open email. Get latest gear. Repeat.

Thank you!