Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Google Maps and a blast from my past

I was talking to a mate the other day when he casually mentioned that he’d been messing around on Google Maps, looking for something or other, and that they’d now implemented the street-view, mouse-drag yellow figure in most areas near to where we live. I answered nonchalantly at first but then remembered an instance from this time last year where I was pretty sure a Google Maps vehicle - complete with the four-way telescopic camera set-up protruding from its roof - spun a 180 degree turn in front of my car at a T-junction. I recall looking in Maps at the time on the road in question but to no avail, probably due to the vast amount of digital images Google would have to process before uploading a tiny patch of a housing estate in Chadderton, so forgot all about it until reminded.

Into Google Maps I went, flicking as quickly as my connection would carry me (BT Broadband + peak time = the speed of a buggered Amoeba) and once I'd finally arrived at the street in question, I yanked the yellow figure into my desired area. Then, it was just a case of trying to get used to rotating every axis of my mouse in order to analyse each direction, much like spraying molten death whilst avoiding a cleansing in a first person shoot ‘em-up. Suddenly, I spotted something in the distance...

Some more mouse-wheel fingertip action and there was my beloved E36 316 SE green BMW - which is now smashed, trashed and scrapped as fully explained about in my blog entry from November 11th, 2009 - following the Google car down the street!

Then, I flicked along the road until I reached the end where I remember the camera vehicle completing its semi-circular turn in front of where I had stopped: lo and behold, there I was behind the wheel of my long-lost car in glorious hi-res detail and with a quick movement of my mouse, in blurred close-up. I presume it’s blurred due to infringement complaints, Human Rights, etc but either way, I’m still chuffed to have such a wide-angle shot of my old green beast included in Google Maps and have been sending screen snips off for all to see me in my past glory.

If you’ve read any of my blog, then you’ll know I periodically return to the ‘boiling rage’ that losing my car has caused me to experience, with having to cycle - and in extreme cases walk - to work all over the worst winter the UK had in 30 years and all the associated problems therein. Indeed, I started and named this blog due to my car crash, so I look at the Google Maps pictures as a vindication of my continual striving to try to succeed, even when my luck had deserted me: now I’m immortalised in a virtual digital render for everyone to see, but only if you know where to find me!

That BMW might look knackered, faded and a bit raggedy but I loved that car...

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