ome of us travel. Some of us don’t. (Some of us have money and care to witness firsthand something outside of what we’ve always called home…some of us don’t.)
Let’s be in agreement here: there’s no replacement for the real thing. But in a world culture dominated less and less by physical stimuli and more and more on the high speed streaming of digital stimuli, it’s no surprise that there’s a website that, with the click of a button, you can find yourself standing anywhere in the world.
Well, almost anywhere. Utilizing the already highly popular and practical technology of Google Maps, specifically Google Street View, the techies behind StumbleUpon have borrowed the feature, one where the user is typically the one to tell IT what location to retrieve, and done nothing more than reverse the operation. “Map Crunch“, which starts one at whatever location of the day, will randomly take you anywhere in the world (that’s been recorded by Google of course), with the click of one button: “Go!” Once there, a user can decide to use the features of Google Street View to move around, change views, and tour the area further, or decide to move on to a new, unknowable destination once more, on and on until either boredom, or the “i’ve seen too much in one day” effect kick in.
Some might wonder, “Why would some people want to roam around seeing places they have no use for and nothing to do with?” Well simply put: some people do. And Map Crunch can help appease many of us who can’t always afford the cost of actual human travel or escape the busyness of our own lives. And with Google’s impressive cameras and interactive options for moving through these images, after a while you may find yourself forgetting you’re not actually there in the first place.
The effect is really quite beautiful, and many times, what with the scenic countrysides and greater world and cultural perspectives you’re bound to “stumble upon”…calming. And I’d bet that’s something that even the most home-bodied tenants of the world could go for.