Feeds

Google adds 25 million grey building 'footprints' to Maps

Ideal for the rooftop chase Parkour enthusiast

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Google has added 25 million building footprints to its Maps product, giving extra detail to maps of key American cities.

Maps that once just showed a road now show the outlines of individual buildings next to that road. And not just big buildings - all the buildings, down to standard residential properties, along with height data about the building.

Google Maps before Footprints added, credit Google

Google Maps before the footprints were added

Google Maps after Footprints added, credit Google

Google Maps after building footprints were added

The big increase in data detail comes from aerial photography, Google explains in the Maps blogpost announcing the change. Feeding aerial photos into an algorithm, its engineers used computer vision techniques to render shapes of the building, adding a wealth of information to its maps.

Users can add their own building footprints with the community map-maker tool, available in the States. Google suggests you only use this to add footprint information for business buildings. It will also allow you to assign a business name to an existing building.

It's a good time for the Chocolate Factory to ramp up Maps. Google is obviously keen to put the pressure on Apple, which recently booted Google's cartography out of the iPhone with iOS6.

Improved areas include Houston, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami and the San Francisco Bay Area. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Special pleading against mass surveillance won't help anyone
Protecting journalists alone won't protect their sources
Big Content Australia just blew a big hole in its credibility
AHEDA's research on average content prices did not expose methodology, so appears less than rigourous
Vodafone to buy 140 Phones 4u stores from stricken retailer
887 jobs 'preserved' in the process, says administrator PwC
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.