Starting today Street View is going on a journey from Jaffna, Matara and Arugam Bay to the rest of Sri Lanka. In 2007 Google brought Google Maps to Sri Lanka.
Thanks to the hard work by the Google Map Maker community we had the most detailed and useful map of Sri Lanka. Now Google is bringing Street View to Sri Lanka. For those of you who are lost: Street View provides some incredible street-level panoramic images of various locations in Google Maps. In other words you can not only know where a place is but also take a virtual tour in Google Maps to see what it’s like. To use Street View simply, just drag that orange icon of a person onto the screen and on a street outlined in blue.
As you’ve probably seen in our tweets by now, Google will be fitting special cameras, lasers and various other sensors onto its infamous Street View cars that’ll drive around the Sri Lanka to grab images. Here’s what Sri Lanka’s Street View car is going to look like.
Once the images have been obtained, there’s a lot of post processing before they are added onto Google Maps. From editing the pictures to blurring faces of people and license plates to ensure privacy, there’s a lot of work that needs to be done. This is why Street View images are not real-time and sadly can take months before they are added onto Google Maps. On the topic of privacy, if there’s an image of you that you don’t want on Street View you can get in touch with Google to have it removed.
So what exactly can you do with Street View? We see ourselves using it to find event locations so we know exactly what to keep an eye out for when driving and also a parking spot. If you ask our friends at Yamu they’ll tell you they can grab some extra shots for their great articles and that people can use it view Sri Lankan landmarks.
In fact, one interesting feature of Street View is Business View. Business View is where you can view panoramic images and take a virtual tour of a business location such as a mall or a restaurant in Google Maps. Sadly, this may take even longer to arrive in Sri Lanka because it requires a photographer that’s certified by Google. We’d recommend our own master photographers: Malshan Gunawardane and Ushan Gunasekera but we need them for events. If you know anyone, ask them to apply here.
We are excited to see Street View finally arrive in Sri Lanka. We’ll be keeping an eye on maps.google.lk to find the 1st set of images and of course on the streets for the Street View cars. Who doesn’t want to do something freaky when they pass by? We’d like to.