<![CDATA[Since its launch in 2007, Google Street View has had its share of controversy. Yet, despite a few setbacks, Street View has continued to grow and thrive ? with imagery now available on all seven continents, including Antarctica, Brazil, and Ireland. Launched in the US, in its beginnings, Street View covered only five cities. Today, some three years later, Street View offers close-up, 360 degree panoramic views of places across the globe. Some are charmed by it; some are exasperated by it; and yes, some are quite angry about it. Brian McClendon, VP of Engineering for Google Earth and Maps has this to say about Street View?s latest accomplishments: ?We often consider Street View to be the last zoom layer on the map, and a way to show you what a place looks like as if you were there in person?whether you?re checking out a coffee shop across town or planning a vacation across the globe. We hope this new imagery will help people in Ireland, Brazil, and even the penguins of Antarctica to navigate nearby, as well as enable people around the world to learn more about these areas.? Google obtains its Street View imagery through the use of a fleet of specially adapted cars. Where areas aren?t accessible by car are covered by ?Google Trikes? or snowmobiles. For the user, using Street View makes it appear as if you are being zoomed in beyond the highest levels of the map or satellite image, placing you in the heart of the area.]]>
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