Google Street View Car In North Escambia (With Photo Gallery)

May 12, 2011

The Google Street View car was spotted in Walnut Hill and Molino Wednesday. And no, that’s not a camera on top. It’s actually 15 cameras and lasers on top, mapping and photographing our communities.

Google Maps with Street View, as well as Google Earth, allows users to explore places through 360-degree street level imagery. Most of the roadways in North Escambia already appear on Street View, but the lower quality images are being updated with new realistic high definition photos.

For a NorthEscambia.com photo gallery of the car and its equipment, click here.

NorthEscambia.com caught up with the Google Street View car at the intersection of Arthur Brown and Pine Forest roads in Walnut Hill Wednesday afternoon. The driver, who is from Pensacola, would not allow us to photograph the inside of the vehicle. But it’s remarkably simple in appearance compared to the outside of the colorful vehicle.

The back seats have been removed or folded down, making room for a ladder to reach the camera mounted above the car. There is one small computer¬† (the original Street View SUV had a rack of computers in 2007) and a hard drive to store the data. There’s one touchscreen computer monitor mounted next to the driver. During our visit, the monitor was displaying a Google map with the driver’s route planned out along with a “record” and “pause” button.

But the real magic is in the red ball mounted above the car. The latest, fifth generation, car’s red ball has 15 lenses taking 360 degrees of photos. It has motion sensors to track its position and three laser sensors to determine distances within the Street View imagery. The laser sensors call also be used to create 3D maps of the surroundings.

GPS sensors, along with sensors that measure speed and direction are used to make sure the images are placed in the right place on the Google Maps and in Google Earth. The sensors even provide enough information to tilt and align the images with hilly terrain.

Google uses cutting-edge face and license plate blurring technology to make sure that people and vehicles captured in the images can’t be identified.

There’s no word when the new images from North Escambia will be available on Google Street View.

For a NorthEscambia.com photo gallery of the car and its equipment, click here.

Pictures top: The Google Street View car Wednesday afternoon on Arthur Brown Road at Pine Forest Road in Walnut Hill. Pictured inset: The red ball contains 15 cameras for photographing a 360 degree view. The three boxes below the cameras are laser mapping sensors. Pictured below: A closeup of the camera systems. NorthEscambia.com exclusive photos, click to enlarge.

Comments

38 Responses to “Google Street View Car In North Escambia (With Photo Gallery)”

  1. Ebonique on November 23rd, 2011 1:25 am

    I once saw this vehicle in the Bronx in the Parkchester community. I wish I had taken a snapshot of it.

  2. Junior on August 21st, 2011 9:14 pm

    The most concerning thing here is what people with bad intentions can do with this data, imagery, exact gps locations matched with photos…the list goes on. Just think about what this may be placing in the laps of evil minded people. Just food for thought but very serious!

  3. Douglas on August 13th, 2011 7:42 pm

    That’s it!! I saw this car or one like it just last Friday (Aug 12th) in Cannonsburg, Michigan. I didn’t clue in what that car might be until it just passed me as I moved Southbound on Ramsdell Drive and the Google car moved Northbound. I will have to see if they captured my house. I just had it repainted and a new roof, but it needs repairs to the porch yet.

  4. Michele on June 16th, 2011 3:13 pm

    I spotted this car on June 15th around 5:00pm Central time on Highway 44 traveling East towards St. Louis, Mo around mile marker 240-250

  5. A woman from Jay on May 20th, 2011 9:23 pm

    Scary that they are getting this info!

  6. David Huie Green on May 14th, 2011 3:36 pm

    REGARDING:
    “Just saw the car here in Las Vegas”

    I suspect they have more than just the one.

    Imagine parking it somewhere and someone trying to steal it.

    “Do you have any idea who stole it?”

    “Got 7 million pictures of him and can tell you within a millimeter all his dimensions.”

    “We’ll need more evidence than that.”

    David for cameras and GPS

  7. Mgibbs on May 13th, 2011 6:09 pm

    Saw it on scenic hwy today

  8. Diana on May 13th, 2011 11:56 am

    I want to know how you get that job driving around the Google car because I want it!!!

  9. Me on May 12th, 2011 9:53 pm

    Big brother is watching!! AKA the feds!! They know who you are.

  10. Roland on May 12th, 2011 9:27 pm

    Just saw the car here in Las Vegas. Weird looking thing on top. Allmost like a soccer ball.

  11. Jim on May 12th, 2011 9:27 pm

    It is, jcellop

  12. jcellop on May 12th, 2011 9:03 pm

    looks like a california license plate on that vehicle.

  13. scrapper on May 12th, 2011 6:48 pm

    Saw him driving on Myrick St downtown pcola a week or two ago…

  14. EMD on May 12th, 2011 6:35 pm

    Jim W.

    I did know that, and others do too. There are just too many who don’t.

    And to George Orwell,

    Many of us know about that too.

    All of us do not have our heads in the sand.

  15. David Huie Green on May 12th, 2011 6:29 pm

    REGARDING:
    “I seem to think from the comments that many of you have not read or did not understand the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four.”

    Whereas others seem to not be able to distinguish between pictures taken in public places and pictures taken in private places. There is no expectation of privacy on a public road and Google isn’t Big Brother. Big Brother might USE the pictures, but that’s a whole different problem.

    No matter what Google does our government or other groups will spew out things as sensible as
    WAR IS PEACE,
    FREEDOM IS SLAVERY,
    and IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.
    In fact Google makes government less likely to get away with such foolishness by only leaving willful ignorance.

    The fascinating thing to me was that Orwell remained a socialist even though he should have realized socialism inherently must control your lives, leading to the dystopia he described. he thought people like Josef Stalin betrayed socialism, not realizing socialism produced people like Stalin.

    David who waved at the cameras again,
    same place at 2:57 PM
    Smile Big Brother is checking your teeth

  16. George Orwell on May 12th, 2011 3:46 pm

    I seem to think from the comments that many of you have not read or did not understand the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four.

  17. riversunshine on May 12th, 2011 2:45 pm

    Saw him headed north on Hwy 29 today.

  18. JIM W on May 12th, 2011 1:09 pm

    For those of you who say “Big Brother” well big brother has been watching for years. Nothing new even back in the cold war era which is what gave it a boost to get it where it is today.

  19. EMD on May 12th, 2011 12:54 pm

    I agree with Ed and Elizabeth.

  20. deBugger on May 12th, 2011 12:19 pm

    I hope they give us the “opt-out” choice for the street view.

    Europeans can ask that their exact location & pics of their homes not be available to just anyone with internet access & a compatible browser.

  21. Sharon on May 12th, 2011 11:03 am

    I hope they can get our address right – we do not live on 99-A . I have looked up my address and it comes in completely wrong. I hope the tech is much better this time……

  22. David Huie Green on May 12th, 2011 10:43 am

    CONSIDERING:
    “It has motion sensors to track its position and three laser sensors to determine distances within the Street View imagery. The laser sensors call also be used to create 3D maps of the surroundings.- — – GPS sensors, along with sensors that measure speed and direction are used to make sure the images are placed in the right place on the Google Maps and in Google Earth. The sensors even provide enough information to tilt and align the images with hilly terrain.”

    just think how many months they’ve been surveying US 29 and wonder if their survey was any more accurate than what it did while driving down the road.

    Maybe yes, maybe no.

    David for unblurred images

  23. David Huie Green on May 12th, 2011 10:38 am

    I waved at it yesterday at the intersection of 97 and 99 at the Menonite Church. I figure it gets the good, the bad and the ugly, so there I was

  24. terri sanders on May 12th, 2011 8:40 am

    Hmmmm.someone needs to show our county commissioner how to use Google Street,so he will know where all his district is!

  25. bryce on May 12th, 2011 8:36 am

    i saw it on saturday on hwy 4! how cool!

  26. dola on May 12th, 2011 8:36 am

    he has been in mobile almost every day this week…. We flipped him the bird! haha

  27. Jane on May 12th, 2011 8:12 am

    Big Brother is watching you now! Behave!

  28. crazy on May 12th, 2011 8:09 am

    It was also in Flomaton last week as well.

  29. xpeecee on May 12th, 2011 7:26 am

    Cool!

  30. Albin on May 12th, 2011 7:18 am

    This made my head turn while driving past Ruritan

  31. farmer on May 12th, 2011 7:05 am

    Awesome!!! What a clever operation. Thanks for the close-up look!

  32. TJ on May 12th, 2011 6:35 am

    I saw it in Cantonment on Wed, morning Did try to get a pic but i was to late it was at the tom thumb,,, get some ga$….$$$$$..I didn’t know what it was,,,

  33. Laine on May 12th, 2011 6:22 am

    I agree with jusme,

  34. Elizabeth on May 12th, 2011 6:03 am

    Big brother…

  35. Ed on May 12th, 2011 4:54 am

    Big Brother checking on septic tanks!

  36. Ctown on May 12th, 2011 1:59 am

    I saw it at 97 and Arena Rd early last week.

  37. escambiamom on May 12th, 2011 1:04 am

    We saw it go down W. Neal Rd. in north Cantonment a couple of weeks back.

  38. jusme on May 12th, 2011 12:59 am

    Absolutely amazing





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