Google Takes Street-View Into Grand Canyon
Posted on October 24, 2012 by
Google Street-View has become old-hat at this point, right? The feature on Google Maps to see a location as if you were standing there in person has spread to thousands of cities worldwide. Though at first only available for major roads, Google has dispatched armies of cars equipped with the bubble shaped, roof-mounted cameras to fill in gaps on side streets. They've even mounted the camera to a snowmobile to map some ski resort trails. There's a cultural phenomena of people trying to be captured by the cameras doing goofy things, to be immortalized forever (or at least until Google re-records that particular place). This was even parodied on Matthew Perry's show, "Go On."
Now, Google is taking it from the streets, and going where their cars are not able to take them. The Google "Trekker", a backpack mounted camera, was used this week to map some popular trails in the Grand Canyon. Because GPS signals are not always available in remote locations like the Grand Canyon, the Trekker has to compensate by using changes in air pressure and orientation. The device take a picture every 2.5 seconds at 5 megapixels. Passing hikers will have their faces blurred for privacy. The Grand Canyon data probably will not be available for several months.
Google plans to send Trekker into other National Parks, and to places such as Venice, Mount Everest, and ancient ruins and castles.
What do you think? Is this something that will be a useful tool? Or will it take the fun out of exploring trails and locations? Leave comments telling us your thoughts.
Source: Associated Press
Photo: Rick Bawmer, AP