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Take a hyperspeed tour of Google Street View

A new website lets you take a hyperlapse trip at supersonic speeds along Google Street View.


(Credit: Teehan+Lax)

A new website lets you take a hyperlapse trip at supersonic speeds along Google Street View.

Google Street View can be a really great tool for navigation — for example, cross-checking against an address before going to a new area to make sure you know what your destination looks like. It also lets you see the world from the comfort of your couch, in a limited sort of fashion, but it can be fun to just jump on, poke around and see what you can see.

Now you can also fly along a route between two points at a rate of 60 frames per second, thanks to a web-based tool created by digital design firm Teehan+Lax. Rather than capturing hundreds of photos and painstakingly stitching them together to create a smooth animation, the studio decided to use a tool that had already done that part of the work: Google Street View. From there, it was a relatively simple matter to turn its work into a web-based tool that anyone can play with.

It's really easy to use. In the interface on the right-hand side of the Google Street View Hyperlapse web page, you enter an address and click the search icon. A map will appear with three objects: a crosshairs and markers for points A and B. These A and B markers indicate the start and finishing positions of your hyperlapse; the crosshairs marker is used to indicate the point on which the camera will focus.

For anyone who thinks the tool could be improved or is just begging to be tinkered with, Teehan+Lax has uploaded all the source code to GitHub — so, potentially, someone could make it even faster.

Now we almost know how the Flash feels.

See what it looks like in the video below, and head on over to the Google Street View Hyperlapse web page to give it a go.