Monday, April 5, 2010

Google Maps Street View goes 3-D

In the normal course of looking for something on Google Maps, and switching to Street View, I discovered a new feature by accident. 3-D!

Doing a little research, I found a few articles talking about this new feature, which was introduced on April 1. Because of the roll-out date, many people seemed to think it was an April Fools' joke. Other articles claim that it is an "Easter Egg" that will appear periodically. But so far, all the places that I've checked (in the US) have had this feature.

To access the 3-D, just go into Street View and look for the little guy on the left, below the zoom control, with the sunglasses. When you click on him, his 3-D glasses come down, and your image will become 3-D. Of course, since I don't have 3-D glasses, I have no idea if this works well. Maybe it's time to buy a pair.

And by the way, Street View is in some pretty tiny little places. Last year I had a meeting in Crivitz, WI, and wanted to look at a motel to see if it was a dump or a possible weekend retreat. If they have Street View on the roads outside Crivitz, WI, the Google team has covered quite a bit of territory.