Setting Your Preferences:
You can personalize and save your own default map settings by clicking the "Set" Button after making your map selections. To return it to the default setup, click the "Clear" button. For example, if you want to always have the temperature markers come up by default, put a check next to "Station Markers" with the "Type" set to "Temps" and click the "Set" button.
Drop Down Menu:
The top, side bar, drop down menu (US-Canada Radar) has all of the pre-set United States lower 48 Regional locations as well as Alaska, Canada, Australia, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands and Guam.
Radar viewing options:
Put a check mark next to Radar (Mosiac) to view the very latest radar image. Put a check next to both "Radar (Mosiac)" and "Animate Radar" in order to view radar animation. The more zoomed in you are, the faster the radar will render.
There are four options for "Station Marker", these are temperature, precipitation, wind and wind gusts. Precipitation is the accumulated daily amount from 12:00am to 12:00pm. There are three marker qualifiers for elevation. You can show the marker data for all elevations, above 500 feet only, or above 1000 feet only. Default is all elevations.
Infrared Satellite is available world wide. Make sure you are zoomed in far enough for proper use.
The "Wind Barbs & Temps" gives the name of the station, the current temperature, wind direction and wind speed for each location.
To see the Graphical Google Traffic layer you must be zoomed to at least zoom level 5 or more.
Set Layer Opacity:
The drop down menu directly under "Set Layer Opacity" will set the desired opacity (lightness/darkness) for each separate layer.
360° Aerial Panorama:
Only while in satellite move and where available, directly under Pegman (the little orange man) a curved arrow comes up when zoomed into one of the last 4 zoom levels on the map. It works all over the United States but not sure where else it works. I heard they are working on expanding it. It's a great feature, perhaps give it a shot over some New York City skyscrappers.
The magnifying glass icon is located directly under the main map controls. Use it to click and drag an area on the map to zoom into. Click on the magnifying glass and it turns into cross hairs, then hold down a left click over the map area you want to zoom into.