This week’s web site is Google Maps. If you haven’t been living under a rock, you’ve probably used, or at least heard of, this site. I find it both useful and fascinating.
Need driving directions, but can’t afford a GPS car navigation system? Google Maps can help. This application is the one I use the most. Anyone that knows me, knows I don’t know how to get anywhere inside 270. I am slowly making my way inward. (Okay, yes, I do know how to get to the Arch. And the zoo. And the old Busch Stadium. I could probably find my way to the new one.) And, other than being so specific that it helps me get out of my subdivision, (that I can navigate without help, thank you) I rely on Google Maps to get me where I need to go. Anywhere. Not just within the STL area.
This weekend, I used a different part of the site. Tom was going to pick up Mark at a friend’s house. He didn’t think he’d been there before, but it was probably a mile and a half from our house, so I could easily tell him how to get there, but pinpointing which house it was, that was a different story. He was looking it up in the school buzz book, when I got on Google Maps and went to the “street view” and was able to show him what the house looked like. He immediately recognized it, admitted he had been there before and took off. Nice. (One of the downsides is viewing your own home. One of our garage doors was open. The landscaping could have used some touching up. The only thing missing was a bicycle dumped in the front yard.
You can look up famous landmarks as well! Want to see the Pentagon? It’s on there. Want to see the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, France? It’s there. Want to see the Gateway Arch? Get your lazy body in the car, and drive East on Hwy 70. Or 40/64. Or 44. (My apologies to my readers not in the STL area. You can view the Gateway Arch on the site.)
I’ve looked up my childhood home, relatives’ homes, and, yes, people i don’t know so well, but am interested to see where they live. Kind of creepy in a way, I guess, but still a lot of fun. One of my friends is looking to buy a house. She’s been able to narrow down her choices considerably using the Google Maps street view, by seeing the houses before she takes the time to go there.
There are lots more uses for the site, but I’ve gotta be honest. I started getting lost and confused. Kind of like really driving, now that I think about it.