We all know that Google Maps technology is invaluable for finding out how to get from point A to point B – or from point A to point D, with B and C in between. But what happens once you arrive at your destination?
Most maps stop being useful the minute you cross the threshold of a building, but, thanks to a new partnership with Google, the Smithsonian’s more than 2.7 million square feet of space are now mapped, both inside and out, using the search engine’s proprietary mapping technology.
The project encompasses 17 museums and the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., and allows visitors with Google Maps for Android to navigate building interiors floor by floor, as well as pinpoint themselves within the building.
You can search for exhibits, stairs, restrooms, food courts and more, as well as find step-by-step walking directions between, say, the Hope Diamond and Dorothy’s Red Slippers (which are located in two different museums).
“An increasing number of our visitors now turn to their mobile devices and familiar applications to help them find their way and get information about the Smithsonian,” said Nancy Proctor, head of mobile strategy and initiatives at the Smithsonian. “Indoor Google Maps helps us achieve our goal of putting the Smithsonian in their hands, both literally and figuratively.”
In addition to museums in D.C., the mapping technology also catalogs the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia, and the George Gustav Heye Center in New York City.
The Smithsonian and Google will continue to increase the level of exhibit detail and the number of features in the maps in coming months. Indoor Maps is available on Google Maps for Android (Android 2.2 or above and Google Maps for Android 6.0 or above).
Thanks to ArtDaily for the tip!