Google Street View is adding a wealth of new information to the most spectacular image collections in its Street View galleries to give online visitors even more to explore and learn as they peruse the images from remote and fantastic locations.
The new facts, notes, details and behind-the-scenes stories are being added by Google to its recently unveiled Views gallery, which highlights some of the most popular Street View image collections, according to an Aug. 13 post by Deanna Yick, the Street View program manager, in a post on the Google Lat Long Blog. "Starting today, to complement the beautiful panoramas you see there, we're also adding useful information about some of the featured locations, and behind-the-scenes stories about what collecting imagery of these places was like," wrote Yick.
The added details include the innermost facts and figures about the Views gallery subjects, from the weight of the Burj Khalifa skyscraper in Dubai (the building's concrete is equivalent in weight to 100,000 elephants), which is the tallest building in the world at 160 stories, to a guided walking tour in the Canadian Arctic, where viewers can hear the sounds of the crunching snow, far from their homes.
"From the Street View Special Collections page where you can browse imagery that transports you from the top of Mount Fuji to the top of the Eiffel Tower, simply click on the 'Go Behind the Views' icon to access this additional content," wrote Yick. "The photography, video, audio tours and more provide a deeper understanding and appreciation for some of the most remarkable places on Earth."
The first two multimedia adventures in the Views collection enable online visitors to experience the Canadian Arctic in Iqaluit, Canada, and the Burj Khalifa, she wrote, with more such details to come. "As we trek around collecting more imagery of interesting places across the globe, we'll continue to add more content to these sections of the Views site," wrote Yick. "So come back often to check them out, get behind-the-scenes insight into how Street View imagery is collected, and learn fun facts and details about these select locations."
The Views gallery was launched in July 2013 as a place where online visitors could add their own gorgeous photos to the amazing maps that are constantly being created with Google Maps. Contributors can submit images by contributing photo spheres (360-degree panoramas that can be created with Android phones) to Google Maps and having them reviewed. The images created with photo spheres can be spectacular, from incredible landscapes to lovely urban images filled with detail, color and clarity. Photo spheres are captured by Android devices through a series of multiple photos that can automatically be turned into a seamless 360-degree experience, according to Google.
The new Views page also incorporates the Street View Gallery, where visitors can also view the incredible panoramas of other Google Street View collections.
Google is always busy expanding its 6-year-old Street View collection of images from the world's most amazing places. Also in July, Google Street View cameras captured fun images inside the Harry Potter Studio in London to give viewers an inside tour of the world of the popular book and movie character. The images cover a portion of the inner sanctum of the Warner Bros. Studio Tour, where the sets and scenery from the beloved Harry Potter films are on display for visitors in real life, from the inside of The Great Hall to the oft-seen cobblestones of Diagon Alley, where Harry and his friends began their adventures. Now, instead of jetting off to London, Harry Potter fans can explore part of that Studio Tour—the infamous Diagon Alley marketplace—using the 360-degree views and full-color imagery provided by Street View for their virtual tour.