What do you get when you combine one of the largest Dinosaur databases in the world with the powers of Google Earth-like technology? The sweet chance to view what your area looked like millions of years ago. You can even see what fossils are nearby. The best part is, the 3D map, dubbed Ancient Earth, is free.
Ancient Earth is the brainchild of Ian Webster, the curator of the Dinosaur Database website. There, you can search by region to find what dinosaurs lived in your neck of the woods. But Ancient Earth is one step better than a searchable database—it’s a 3D globe that shows you our planet through the ages.
When you first open Ancient Earth, it defaults to 240 million years ago, around the time that early dinosaurs started to roam the Earth. You’ll see a large shift in the continents, but helpfully it also shows political boundaries, so you won’t be lost.
You can input your state, zip code, or even your full address to get a pinpoint of where you live, and the interface will show you what fossils are nearby. You can click fossil listing to get a full database entry on the dinosaurs from your area.
When you’re ready to zip through time, you can change the period to anytime from the present to 750 million years ago. You can jump to the appearances of different types of life, like green algae or insects, if you prefer.
Don’t forget to poke around and play with some of the other options, too. Then share with some friends so they can peak into our planet’s history, too.