Virtual Air Tours

Starting a CityFlyBy of Los Angeles, CA

Starting a CityFlyBy of Los Angeles, CA

I created because I love flying. As I child, I spent weeks meticulously building planes and gliders. I would beg my father to drive us into the country so I could hurl them off a hillside (often with disastrous consequences!). For the longest time, I dreamt of becoming an airline pilot.

When I lived in California, I’d take regular road-trips out into the desert and up the Pacific Coast. Some memorable trips were to Las Vegas, San Simeon, Pahrump NV, Bishop CA, Hot Springs SD, Cheyenne WY – The list could go on all day! The feeling I would get when coming over a huge crested hilltop to see a vista of pure space and panorama spanning out for 100 miles infront of me is one I’ve seldom experienced anywhere else. CityFlyBy is my attempt to bring that spirit of adventure and freedom to anyone with a computer/tablet.

Back to my childhood dream of becoming a pilot. Somewhere along the way, life happened, and I ended up applying my creative and technical aptitudes in an altogether different professional sphere. Now, I’m returning to my roots, and the things I know I love. Which – to come full circle – is how CityFlyBy was born.

To me, flying represents the ultimate freedom and exploration. The world of technology and online mapping has made huge strides forward in the last decade or so. I felt that the time was right for a website which lets anyone and everyone experience some of the joy of flying and freedom. Even if they might not be able to physically travel themselves. aims to give you an aerial fly-by tour of every city, town and village in the United States. A voiceover will also narrate some salient facts about your chosen destination as the flight progresses (turn your volume up if you can’t here it.) There are currently almost 19,000 pre-recorded flights in the database. If your town isn’t currently listed, please drop me a message and I’ll endeavour to add it.

Google Earth is a wonderful program, but it still requires a software download or browser plugin installation before it will work. CityFlyBy gets around this limitation by using built-in browser technology (WebGL) for the 3D flight. If your browser doesn’t support WebGL, please consider upgrading. See here for more details about WebGL browser support.

Longer-term, there are various directions in which I’d love to push with CityFlyBy. For now though, I just wanted to get a basic pass of the idea up and running, and to find out if people found the site useful.

CityFlyBy is implemented almost entirely in Google Go. It also uses HTML5, CSS and Javascript, and makes use of several open-source technologies. For more information, please visit the About page.

To launch your first virtual air tour, visit the CityFlyBy homepage here.

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