Is Apple positioning itself as a Google Street View and Microsoft Bing Maps competitor? Apparently, Apple recently acquired C3 Technologies' also offer Street View and Interior views.
From the entry: "In addition to 3D maps, C3 also makes awesome street level imagery captured using "an advanced multiple camera system with overlapping viewing angles to capture the entire surroundings in stereo. [...] As well as increasing its geographic range, C3 is expanding into interior settings. With a special camera rig, they can also create a 3D model of the interior of a building using the same photo stitching they use with their aerial or street level maps."
In addition to today's other news about Microsoft named Bing Panorama Builder And Streetside Video, here's some more details on the two announcements. The first one focused on new features: Interior Views, Enhanced OpenTable Integration, Real-Time Transit, and Streetside for Mobile:
The second official entry is all about Bing Maps new map style, version 1.1. Key changes are:
Of course, the entry offers several screenshots to show the differences.
Over the weekend, Slashdot discussed this story named A Portable Laser Backpack For 3D Mapping. Their summary: "A portable laser backpack for 3D mapping has been developed at the University of California, Berkeley, where it is being hailed as a breakthrough technology capable of producing fast, automatic and realistic 3D mapping of difficult interior environments. ... The backpack is the first of a series of similar systems to work without being strapped to a robot or attached to a cart. At the same time, its data acquisition speed is very fast, as it collects the data while the human operator is walking; this is in contrast with existing systems in which the data is painstakingly collected in a stop-and-go fashion, resulting in days and weeks of data acquisition time. It utilizes novel sensor fusion algorithms that use cameras, lasers range finders and inertial measurement units to generate a textured, photo-realistic, 3D model that can operate without GPS input and that is a big challenge."