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Processing Google Streetview

Coding is completely new to me, and trying to figure out Processing was like trying to learn a new language. This Google Streetview code took a little while for me to get my head around, but after what felt like hours of staring at what seemed like random sequences of symbols on the screen I finally got there.

So what was I trying to achieve? Tom set the CAP students a task of trying to get as close as possible to a location in Google Streetview, then create a 360 view of that location using Processing. My location? Area 51. I am not one of those people who are massively into aliens, space or anything else related to that particular theme. But I do like to know things that i am not supposed to, and the intrigue of a mysterious location which houses who knows how many secrets that we the general public will never find out is something that really stands out to me. I decided on this location to see how close Google can get me to those secrets.

The answer is, not very close.

I can get to the main highway that runs adjacent to the facility. I can get to several viewing points in the Nevada wastelands. There is no major security gate, there is miles and miles of land.

I chose one of the locations on the highway, closest to the turn off to the facility. This is where Processing left me stumped. I loaded the co-ordinates into the code, set it to how it should work, pressed run and came across a frozen still of the location. Something isn’t right, I thought. So I tried it again… And again… Hoping for better results. Madness, I know. Rather than being impatient, like the first few times, I waited, just to see whether or not the full 360 would eventually load.

It did.

Kind of.

Rather than having a full 360, I had a long section of one still, and then a half loop of the rest of the scene. Okay, so that’s progress.

After a little while of playing around, trying to see if I could make it work, I decided to try a different set of co-ordinates. One of the viewing stations, equidistant to my original set of co-ordinates. Cautiously optimistic, I loaded them into the code and this time it worked. I had a full 360 view of my location. After a little bit of investigating I found that the original co-ordinates did not supply all of the images needed to make the full 360 loop, which is why my first attempt was so unsuccessful. This put my mind to rest, it was not me failing to understand the code.


I will upload videos later showing the two different co-ordinates and their results.