For our neighbours south of the border (The U.S.A), Google Street View has been a tool that many have utilized for the better part of a year in most major urban areas, but those in the great white north have not been so priviledged, with the ground view map abruptly ending at the border.
Today marks the official launch of Google Map’s Street View service in Canada. The 360-degree mapping system, brings viewers to ground level to look upon the world in an almost spooky, from the passenger seat, like fashion.
The “street view” is achieved by Google stitching together millions of still photo’s taken from various all various angles by Google company vehicles cruising the streets with camera’s atop the cars taking photo’s every few seconds.
Google had begun snapping photos in Canada by approximately early 2007, and two years later we finally see the finished product. The service currently has most major cities mapped, including; Vancouver, Calgary Toronto, Ottawa, Kitchener, Waterloo, Montreal, Quebec City, Halifax and as a Olympic 2010 special, the cities of Squamish and Whistler
The company has come under fire from watchdog & privacy groups across the globe where its service has been launched, due to the fact that, many people are unknowingly having their photo snapped, and publicly posted without their knowledge or consent. However, Google and the law maintains that by being out in public you loose all reasonable expectations of privacy, and as a part of the service, they automatically blot out faces and license plates.