Google merges online and offline worlds in Maps

Aug 08, 2012
Google Earth and Maps vice president Brian McClendon speaks in June 2012 in San Francisco, California. Google on Wednesday took another step in its quest to merge the Internet with the real world with Maps and put itself at the heart of mobile gadget lifestyles in the process.

Google on Wednesday took another step in its quest to merge the Internet with the real world with Maps and put itself at the heart of mobile gadget lifestyles in the process.

The California technology titan added Poland and the Ukraine to the list of more than 200 countries and regions where people can correct, update, or enhance Maps with local insights or expertise.

"Google has been about searching the online world, but most people live in the offline world, the physical world," Google Earth and Maps vice president Brian McClendon told AFP.

"We want to be able to provide a map where ever you are going; a way to have the best answers for what is within walking distance and transmit them in a fast, interactive way."

Google began tapping into for cartography in 2008 with the launch of a Map Maker tool in India, where details regarding streets in cities was meager to non-existent.

"There were some places in the world where, even in big cities, the map was essentially a blank canvass," said Map Maker product manager James Kelly.

"We have taken the tool from just adding roads to adding all kinds of features like and suitability for bicycles," he continued. "We also made it possible to add businesses and other points of interest."

The tool allows people to update Google Maps to show local features ranging from bicycle paths and foot trails to parking lots or .

Verified or trusted editing changes go live in minutes and spread across the more than 800,000 websites that embed .

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User comments : 4

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RhabbKnotte
not rated yet Aug 08, 2012
I get most of my info from Phys.org. But do we really need a Google Press release to be posted on a Science site?
Milou
not rated yet Aug 08, 2012
Who verifies the data to be correct and accurate? Does Google pay the people for their input?
alfie_null
4 / 5 (1) Aug 09, 2012
Who verifies the data to be correct and accurate?

New, unexplored territory for optimizers. If/when it becomes a problem, I'd guess Google will make it hard to affect attractive-to-optimize information (locations of businesses, etc.) similar to how Wikipedia operates with controversial entries.

Does Google pay the people for their input?

Why? Particularly if the best quality information is that which is volunteered. Paying for data is an invitation to receive lots of poor quality data.
Milou
not rated yet Aug 10, 2012
Thanks for the answers. But I do not understand one bit about the first answer. Lots of fancy words "...affect attractive-to-optimize information...". Sounds more like a resume for a job??? In any case, I am sure there is an algorithm for it.

On the second part I would badger that data given voluntary (free) would be poor and/or false. One of the most wealthiest company with $$$ billions and they want volunteers, is like asking you to kick your butt while walking.

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