Wednesday 6 August 2008

Google can have my babies

With the launch of Google's interactive addition to their mapping service, Street View, it really tops off their amazing service.

Last year they added 3D buildings to major cities and landscapes via it's sister web application Google Earth. It's hard not to be a Google nut, when they give all this away for free. The technology was originally developed in Sydney.

As you can see in the pic below, on Sheridan Street, across the road from the Courthouse, you can clearly identify all the rego numbers on the cars, even though there was some claim about these being removed. Personally, I don't give a rats what they photograph in a public street. I mean, if you were outside in your pyjamas when the Google cam-mobile drove past, then that's your problem.

Privacy advocates have objected to Street View. You can see people leaving strip clubs, people entering adult video stores, protesters at an abortion clinic, sunbathers in bikinis, etc. Google says that the photos are taken from public property, however they have removed photos of domestic violence shelters, and allows anyone to notify images for removal.

Here's the detailed photo that was captured when they mapped Sydney recently.

A Pittsburgh couple is suing Google for invasion of privacy. Aaron and Christine Boring, yup, that's their name, accuse Google of an "intentional and/or grossly reckless invasion" of their seclusion and privacy since they live on a street that is "clearly marked with a 'Private Road' sign," according to a lawsuit filed. However, a photograph of the Boring couple's home was already available on the county tax assessor's website prior to their lawsuit.

You'll need Broadband to access this service. To search, type in "Sheridan Street, Cairns, Queensland, Australia" then click the Street View, you can go full screen. Click and drag the photo and scroll around 360 degrees. By clicking the arrows, you can move along the street every few meters.

Not every street in Cairns is photographed, only the blue highlighted ones that you will see on Google Maps. Street View is now fully integrated into Google Earth 4.3 and you can also embed Street View into websites, to show others where your house or business is.

Many remote roads and towns have been captured including 1675km across the Nullabor Plain on the Eyre Highway. However, our most famous monolith, Uluru is not there as permits to photograph some Northern Territory locations, were not granted. All the Eastern seaboard was snapped, and much of the west coast, revealing towns unfamiliar to many.

If you want some real fun, here's the best collection of some zany views found. Enjoy!

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