Google has been adding new Street Views on their Google Earth and Google Maps sites. Last month, they added the entire Tour de France route, and now the feature is also available in parts of Australia and Japan. The latest location to have its street view added was Mountain View, California where one of the local residents got photographed doing something rather unique.
It appears that Googlers in the region were told about Google’s plans in advance. People were out on the street fully prepared. The street was lined by Google employees and friends who were obviously excited about the event, showing off various things.
In fact, one enthusiastic Googler, Michael Weiss-Malik, who works for the Google Geo team, actually put up a sign on the street, asking his beloved to marry him. It was a homemade banner saying “Proposal 2.0: Marry me Leslie!!”.
Later, Weiss also launched a site, MarryMeLeslie.com with an email address for Leslie, where a lot of people wrote to her, advising her to marry Michael.
Weiss explains on the site that he had already proposed to her last April, and she had accepted his proposal. However, he felt that his original proposal had not been exciting enough. He therefore hit upon a novel plan to take this opportunity to propose to his sweetheart, over the Web.
The couple are planning to get married in May!
There is a flip side to all these technological advances. A lot of people, especially in New Zealand, have voiced their fears about their security and privacy being invaded, as the information available on the sites could be misused if it fell into the wrong hands.
Google says that they take their clients concerns very seriously, and will do everything they can to protect users, like blurring faces and number plates where requested. It will also be possible to report any inappropriate imagery and have it deleted.
However, there is no foolproof way to protect ones identity when online, as websites identify all their visitors from the IP address and can easily gather a lot of information about any user.