One of the tools people like me use when we want to see the vanished city is Google Maps' "Street View." As today's New York changes at lightspeed, Google inevitably falls behind. Until they catch up, we can still find buildings that have since fallen, businesses that once were, empty lots that are now condos. EV Grieve illustrated this beautifully in a post just yesterday.
But Google being Google, it's always working to catch up and soon those images will vanish, too, replaced by the new.
Earlier this week, I spotted the Google cam car in Chelsea, one of the fastest changing parts of town. If you ever wondered how they do it, here it is. The device holds 9 cameras, all looking in different directions, including straight up at the clouds--for reasons only Google knows. The driver just drives while the cameras do the work, always watching, never blinking.
Right now, those images of the lost city are vanishing, wiped out by this roving eye in the sky, replaced by the new blocks with their condos, brasseries, and boutiques. Enjoy them while they last.
Meanwhile, driving the Google cam car is not a bad gig. His next stop? Dubai.