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    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Google Will Resume Street View Photography in Four Countries
    Jeremy Kirk–Fri Jul 9, 6:40 am ET

    Google said on Friday it will resume collection of Street View images in four countries following the removal of Wi-Fi data collection equipment that thrust the company into the spotlight of data protection officials worldwide.

    Starting next week, Street View vehicles will being roaming Ireland, Norway, South Africa and Sweden again, wrote Brian McClendon, vice president of engineering for Google Geo on the company's European public policy blog. Google has spoken to regulators in those countries.

    "The Wi-Fi data collection equipment has been removed from our cars in each country, and the independent security experts Stroz Friedberg have approved a protocol to ensure any Wi-Fi-related software is also removed from the cars before they start driving again," McClendon wrote. "Our cars will no longer collect any Wi-Fi information at all, but will continue to collect photos and 3D imagery as they did before."

    "We recognize that serious mistakes were made in the collection of Wi-Fi payload data, and we have worked to quickly rectify them," he wrote.

    Google admitted in May that it had collected information such as SSID (Service Set Identifier) and MAC (Media Access Control) addresses from unencrypted Wi-Fi routers, following a request for an audit by German data protection authorities in Hamburg. The admission started a spate of inquiries into the program in other countries including France, Italy, the U.K., the U.S., and Spain.

    The U.K.'s Information Commissioner's Office said Google appeared to have breached data protection requirements but the office declined to take action when Google agreed to delete the data. In Germany, the Hamburg prosecutor's office is continuing its criminal investigation into Street View, but charges have not been filed yet, spokesman Wilhelm Möllers said on Friday.

    Meanwhile, Hamburg's Data Protection Authority is continuing to work with Google to fully understand how the Wi-Fi collection system worked, said Hans Joachim-Menzel, vice head of the agency.

    Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com







    I don't know about you, but I can't get enough of Google Street View. For me it's almost as bad as an internet porn addiction.
    For someone who travels alot it's an invaluable resource for both practicle travel related reasons, and also a degree of entertainment value.
    If you use it, share your opinions etc.
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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clint Rossmere View Post
    I don't know about you, but I can't get enough of Google Street View. ... If you use it, share your opinions etc.
    I found it unfortunately essential for traveling in Taiwan because often I could not get Pinyin (Romanized) street names to work and had to roam around virtually looking for storefronts or identifying landmarks. If only the photography was better: sometimes a bus blocked the view, and building numbers could at times be blurry.

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    Silver Lounger Duchess843's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jscher2000 View Post
    I found it unfortunately essential for traveling in Taiwan because often I could not get Pinyin (Romanized) street names to work and had to roam around virtually looking for storefronts or identifying landmarks. If only the photography was better: sometimes a bus blocked the view, and building numbers could at times be blurry.
    Hi Jscher,

    Can Google Street View be used locally like a GPS unit or is just to be used when traveling outside the US?

    Gloria
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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duchess843 View Post
    Can Google Street View be used locally like a GPS unit or is just to be used when traveling outside the US?
    Hmmm, Street View refers to photos taken at street level. Those are occasionally useful "on the go," but more likely you would just use the map view for navigation. Anyway, Street View is available in Google Maps for Mobile on all supported platforms (iPhone, BlackBerry, Android, Nokia S60, Windows Mobile). Screen size and data performance (3G or better is a must) would be critical factors affecting its utility.

    If you haven't already installed Google Maps on your smart phone, give it a try: http://www.google.com/mobile/maps/ Or if you are still considering possibly acquiring a smart phone in the future, imagine how cool it will be.

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    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Google Street View can also be used in any 32 bit, flash enabled web browser. Just go to google maps at
    http://maps.google.com/maps, zoom in and put the little orange man to the left on the map.
    Attached Images Attached Images
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    Silver Lounger Duchess843's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jscher2000 View Post
    Hmmm, Street View refers to photos taken at street level. Those are occasionally useful "on the go," but more likely you would just use the map view for navigation. Anyway, Street View is available in Google Maps for Mobile on all supported platforms (iPhone, BlackBerry, Android, Nokia S60, Windows Mobile). Screen size and data performance (3G or better is a must) would be critical factors affecting its utility.

    If you haven't already installed Google Maps on your smart phone, give it a try: http://www.google.com/mobile/maps/ Or if you are still considering possibly acquiring a smart phone in the future, imagine how cool it will be.
    Thank you Jscher, I have an IPhone which my son says I need like last years newspaper. I will have to get him to setup Google maps.

    Cool, I am not, I wonder if it's too late to become cool?
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    Silver Lounger Duchess843's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clint Rossmere View Post
    Google Street View can also be used in any 32 bit, flash enabled web browser. Just go to google maps at
    http://maps.google.com/maps, zoom in and put the little orange man to the left on the map.
    I have been reading a lot about Google maps but never tried it. Perhaps I will now.
    Thanks for the info and the link.

    Gloria
    <img src=/S/coffeetime.gif border=0 alt=coffeetime width=32 height=48>

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    2 Star Lounger
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    I love it. We recently visited Cherbourg and viewed the Quayside and our hotel before we went. Now we go and look at the tables we sat at, remembering the meals we ate and the people we met. I have also visted places I lived years ago and been able to virtually "walk" along the street within the photos. Unfortunately, GoogleEarth usually crashes after I've "walked" for a while. Hopefully they will fix this issue soon.

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    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    A fast internet connection would definitely be helpful with Google Street Views.
    Anything less is kind of disappointing, as one would have to continuously wait for the photos to load
    whenever a direction is altered.
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    Google Maps, satellite and street view are really powerful tools. But I second the fast connection recommendation. The Google map apps design requires a lot of traffic between you and the server.

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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Wow, this Microsoft Research demonstration shows cool tricks that Google's going to have to match: Street Slide: Browsing Street Level Imagery.

  12. #12
    WS Lounge VIP mrjimphelps's Avatar
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    I'm probably the only person here concerned about this, but I personally think that Google Street View is a huge invasion of privacy.

    Yes, I know that anyone can drive by my house and see what it looks like. But I really don't want an interactive picture of my neighborhood (and my house) being displayed for all the world to see.

    I believe that people are entitled to some privacy, especially if they are private citizens and not in public office.

    Google takes the opposite view -- that is, that they are entitled to steal or harvest whatever information they can get their hands on. This is evidenced by their getting caught driving around harvesting SSIDs and passwords on private citizens' unsecured routers. They then package and sell the information.

    Personally, I hope someone successfully sues Google for billions of dollars for privacy violations, and then devotes that money to the cause of privacy for the little guy, who has no effective way to protect his privacy.

    My 2c.

  13. #13
    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    There have been plenty of Street View suits. just google street view suits. Personally, it doesn't bother me. I have better things to worry about.

    Jerry

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