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Online Innovation October 7th, 2009
In early 2009 Google began its expeditious prowl of the streets of the Greater Toronto area, including areas like Hamilton, Oakville, Markham, Oshawa and many other regions across Ontario. The goal of gathering the worlds information was taken to a whole new level with the earlier deployment of Google Street View in other cities like Los Angeles, New York City and London, England.
Today the Greater Toronto Area got to see the results of this tremendous amount of work. Toronto is now visible to the world in Google Street View!
Our own Toronto area office was buzzing today as we all got to see each others homes, people who were on the street when pictures were taken and who’s cars were in the driveway. Privacy issues anyone?
Initially introduced May 25, 2007 showing selected areas in the United States and has evolved to show full 360 degree panoramic views. By employing people in specially fitted Google cars, Google has been mapping selected cities for several years now. Generally, Google has introduced a new area anywhere from 2 to 100 days.
Seen to the left is an image of a fitted Google car stopped by a curious officer of the law!
Think Google Street View and many people begin thinking ‘Big Brother’. There have been issues over privacy. In response to this issue, Google has employed software which blurs human faces, car license plates, designated signs etc.
Although in some cases it is fairly obvious to see why blurring peoples faces out may not be enough. If you know Toronto and more specifically Etobicoke, you will understand why there are privacy issues still.
No matter which way you look at it, you have to admit that the innovations we are seeing of late will do much greater good then they will bad. The information revolution continues and Google seems to be continually following their mandate. We applaud the launch of Google Street view in Toronto, Canada and welcome those around the world to see our beautiful city!
To learn more about Google Street View and its evolution you can read more here.