A method and apparatus for interactively viewing a real-world environment. The viewer includes a user interface having a first window for displaying a two-dimensional representation of a three-dimensional model of the real world environment. The viewer further includes a plurality of other viewing areas for displaying and querying for views of the real-world environment. The viewer includes a content-based event timeline that graphically depicts multi-media events satisfying user queries. Several methods can be used to select an event for display. For example, the user can select an event by selecting the event representation from the timeline. Alternatively, the user can select an event by querying the system for selected objects, viewing angles, input devices, etc. The viewer synchronizes and links together all of the multi-media data types associated with a selected event. Thus, when the user selects an event, the viewer displays all of the multi-media information (such as audio/video and textual information) that is associated with the selected event.