Google launched the Street View feature in Google Maps today at the Where 2.0 conference. For select cities, you can now view street-level panoramic photography as you browse around a map location. It’s like being able to take a virtual driving tour of a city, right from your desk.
There is a little minifig that you can drag around the map. When you release it, a small flash application is overlayed above the map which displays the panoramic photo for that location. Greg Sadetsky used the freeware ActionScript decompiler, Flare, to investigate the viewer’s source. If you curious about how the viewer works, that might be a good place to start – [via] Link.
Fabian K. notes that Google has been using GeoIP lookups quite frequently to restrict beta features to specific locales and the street view feature is no exception. If you are outside the US, you can enable street view by adding a &gl=us to the end of the maps.google.com url. You’ll still only be able to view the handful of cities that have pano-image data, but you can at least get a glipse for what’s coming – Link.