Sunday, January 31, 2010

Street view in DK (updated again)

DK got google streetview now. I've never tried it before, but Copenhagen Eye roused my curiosity by mentioning this scene on Vestergade 12, Copenhagen. (I tried to link directly, but for some reason it seems you can't.)


It amazes me how nostalgic, or something, it makes me to browse pictures of Copenhagen. I've only been there pretty rarely in the past decade, but I know it so intimately, so it's at once some strange and wonderful place, and like home. I keep wanting to shout: "I know that place!"

Not to mention my home town, you can browse street view of Karrebæksminde, Denmark, now. Amazingly that seems less familiar, but then of course I have not lived there since I was 18 (nearly thirty years ago), so it's bound to have changed a lot.
I mean, I've visited, of course, but not enough to make it intimately familiar in its current form. It's been modernized a lot, more open and clean in the lines.

Wow, it really is amazingly different. It gives me a really strange sensation, which I've felt before once when I visited my childhood street and it did not seem familiar at all... a sort of feeling of... unreality or something. Not unpleasant, just very odd. Does anybody know that?

... Man, I lived on that beach in the summer as a kid. Well, before I learned to read for serious anyway. (Funny, they forgot to blur the man's head for some reason.)

Wow, the more I look... this is the entrance to the street where I grew up, and I can't describe to you how alien it looks to me. To the point where I'm actually wondering if they actually have not just renovated the houses, but actually rebuilt them! I think one has to look long and hard (and have photos or an unusually good memory) to find any details at all which are the same from my childhood.

It should probably be obvious to me that things change, so I guess I've been so involved in my own life that I have never really thought much about this before. Live and learn.

... Well, hey, found a couple of buildings, especially the one one the right, which look pretty much like they did!


And of course, I should have realized: the buildings on this old, central street are generally classified in the highest order, so outwardly they look pretty much like in my childhood. My granddad and father used to have a paint store right in the middle of this picture (next to the canal), and one of my childhood bud's grandmother used to live in the red house.

Above: something really familiar! That wooden gate has been the same for over fifty years! :-)

Boom, and we're back in Copenhagen for no good reason! I used to live in one small room, in my twenties, at the top there, with three other young men, in near-poverty (or at least none of us ever had any cash), here in central Copenhagen (district Vesterbro). Now I'm probably way past the point where anybody cares anymore. :-)

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See below how street view is made, using a camera/man cyborg.
I like that they use film, and print the pictures, and then scan the prints! You just can't trust those newfangled digital cameras...
(OK, on second look it does not scan as such, merely spot licence plates and such. But amazingly, these streets are free of humans!)



I'm just realizing one use of Street View can be to location-scout for street photography, for somebody like me who does not have a car. A bit feeble, but I'm not sure how many uses it has otherwise, but it must have some, for them to make such a huge effort.

Update: They have to do it over in Japan, due to too many backyards been covered, the cameras are too tall. Ouch!
It's interesting that they have so many problems, because so far as I know, very few countries have laws against photographing in public.


It's gotta be a tough job driving those cars. When it's not just boring...


"Most recently we've added a new vehicle to our fleet that we call the "Trike." We basically took the same technology in our Street View cars and towed them behind a 3-wheeled tricycle in a device reminiscent of an ice cream cart. The Trike lets us reach areas not accessible by car, such as hiking trails, biking trails and college campuses, just to name a few." - Google article.

6 comments:

Alex said...

Okay, so I thought this was a fake bike accident google streetview. Hey I am a cynic. But I looked anyway.

It seems that the google camera car made two passes through the neighbourhood. One pass had a small blue car following it, that was used for the straight through. The image turning left onto kattesundet has the bike taking a tumble. The next right after the corner is "no longer available" and then the next few show the driver getting out of his car.

Fascinating eh!.

Pascal [P-04referent] said...

"I'm just realizing one use of Street View can be to location-scout for street photography, for somebody like me who does not have a car."

It's also very convenient to plan criminal bombings, for terrorists who don't have a camera.
Just today, while using the bathroom, to alleviate the boredom, I used Google Maps to plan Al-Qaeda commando raids on:
- My house
- My old house
- My late grandparents' house
- The Lebanese Army barracks about 1km from my house
- My grandma's house in rural France (note: careful, she's got a hunting rifle!)
- The private residence of our former President, ALSO about 1km from my house. (Hey, Lebanon is a small country!)
- My old high school.
- The girl school about ½km from my non co-ed high school.
Heck, I took enough screen captures in one afternoon to bomb one third of this @#%$& country!
The images of the American Embassy in Awkar were taken with extra high quality. Thanks, Google Maps! (Oh yeah, and "Allah ackbar", blah blah blah)

It's even better in the USA. You simply type a random city address in the search window, and it shows you how to drive there! Tomorrow, I'm paparazzing LaToya Jackson in her private swimming pool. According to Lebanese law, I can't be prosecuted, because the lewd camera wasn't located in Lebanon!
(In fact, it's in outer space, no?)

Next, I'll probably voyeur on some pixel-sized children in Disneyland, Florida.

HAH! Now I'm more powerful than the NSA, the CIA, the FBI, the MI-5 and the VAT put together, all while sitting on my fat farting ass, and they don't even suspect it!

Machiavellian. }:-)

Hans said...

The funny thing about the bike crash in Vestergade 12 in Copenhagen is that the guy was trying to take a photo of the Google car with his cell phone, but apparently couldn't control it all to well. He was on the radio last week :)

Eolake Stobblehouse said...

Thanks for the info, Hans. Good of you to pop in.

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