Google releases digital slide projector for vacay pics

(Dudarev Mikhail/

(Dudarev Mikhail/


, Last Updated: 10:50 AM ET

Google has released the digital, 2013 version of the vintage slide projector with a new tool that allows users to build a video, photo and mapped tour of their latest family vacation or trip abroad.

First released as a memorial project for fallen soldiers in the US, the interactive tool by Google Earth is now being touted as an easy storytelling tool that allows users to package their vacation or any other project   into an all-in-one multimedia storyboard.

To create a project in Tour Builder, users give it a name, add an introduction photo and a description. They can then drop placemarks on Google Earth and embed photos and videos to guide readers through the story.

Just returned from a cross-European backpacking trip? Share your adventures with friends and family with a chronological narrative that uses placemarks to pinpoint the Belgian restaurant with the best mussels and fries or the Parisian cafe where you saw director David Lynch sitting on the outdoor terrace.

In addition to documenting travels, the platform can be used to tell any range of stories. Existing Tour Builder stories include the remarkable trajectory of British primatologist Dr. Jane Goodall and the geographical look at the American war of Independence, created by a high school teacher as a teaching aide.

Watch an introductory video of Google Earth's Tool Builder below.