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Online chat rooms in street view maps

Image credit: Google street view

Darko Savic
Darko Savic Mar 12, 2022
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Slack-like chat rooms within Google street view maps. Explore the world, chat with locals.
The chat rooms are tastefully integrated into the surroundings to look like transparent billboards.
  • Chat with your old friends in the neighborhood where you used to hang out.
  • Say hello to old neighbors you haven't seen in a while.
  • Ask locals for help with whatever it is that you're looking for.
  • Leave messages for people in the area.
  • Leave temporary reviews of stuff that is nearby.
  • Meet local people ahead of traveling there.
  • A way to ask if anyone found your lost items in the area.
How it works
Imagine browsing Google street view. Occasionally you encounter a slack-like chat room that is fixed in place like a transparent billboard. You can move around it in 3D and view it from different angles.
You can use the chatbox to say hello and join in on the conversation. If there are no other people online at the moment, you can still see 500 of the latest messages. You can type whatever you like. Others will see it as they browse by.
You can opt to be notified when someone replies.
You can create a new chat room anywhere, as long as it's at least a few meters away from other existing chat rooms. They can't be placed over businesses unless this is done by the owner. Building owners can request removal/movement of the chat rooms.
The creator pays a yearly rent for location in the same way people pay for web domains.
Creative contributions

Advertisement and announcements on these billboards

jnikola Mar 15, 2022
Okay, I am pretty impressed by this idea. I love it!
What I would like to add is a function to leave announcements or advertisements about local issues, events, or products. That way every member of your neighborhood can come and see what's happening.
Another idea would be to have the ability to zoom the daily-updated notice boards in your neighborhood. People would take a photo of it (almost) every day and upload it through the "local contributors" program. That way people could check daily refreshed announcements without physically going to the notice boards.
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic2 years ago
Yes. Or live video street views
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Allowing for many chat rooms in the same spot

Povilas S
Povilas S Mar 12, 2022
I like the idea, I think it has a lot of potential, but from what you wrote in how it works part (if I understand it correctly) it seems a bit limited.
I suggest allowing many chat rooms in the same spot, I also suggest that instead of the chat room creator having to pay the "location domain" rent, google maps could add this feature to a subscription-based upgraded version of google maps. So anyone having "google maps premium" could see, use and create chatrooms on google maps. That's if there would really be a need for additional income to sustain this, maybe google could include the function for free.
That way anyone wanting to start a chat room in a certain spot could do this and invite others to chip in. Chat rooms would be initially marked with signs similar to location/object markers now used in google maps. Seeing a "chat room" marker would mean that there is one or more chat rooms in that specific spot. Upon clicking on the marker you'd see a list of chat rooms present in that spot, you could use a search function to find a specific chat room in case there were a lot of them (e.g. on the Eifel tower).
When you'd enter a specific chat room in that location, you'd see something similar as shown in the cover image of this idea, you wouldn't see the mess of other chat rooms. Chat rooms could be both private and public, the creator would choose that through chat room settings.
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic2 years ago
Although Google would be a logical choice, this doesn't have to be created by them. I think anyone can build on top of Google products.
By having many chat rooms in the same spot, what would a person see when they get to that spot? Are you suggesting there to be some kind of a lobby, and then people can create unlimited chatrooms linked from the spot's lobby?
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Povilas S
Povilas S2 years ago
Darko Savic There would be a rather tiny digital marker indicating that there is a chat room (or many chat rooms) hidden under it. Something similar to an ordinary location marker or whatever.
You'd press upon the marker and it would open a page (dropdown menu, etc.) with a list of chat rooms available, you'd then choose a particular chat room that you want to join. When being in a certain chat room, something like you illustrated in the cover image would be seen. You could escape that mode and join another chat room, again by accessing the dropdown menu.
For aesthetic purposes, an option is to make the chat room markers visible only when the user is not in a street view mode (seeing a map from above), only after choosing a particular chat room the view would shift to the street view with a rather transparent chat box square (as you illustrated). But I think even placing tiny digital markers in street view mode wouldn't be a problem. What do you think?
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic2 years ago
Povilas S What you describe would be a different product with similar functionality. If done by google, they can't just put the chat rooms in everyone's faces all over the street view. They would have to add icons as you say.
However, in my idea proposal, the map's purpose would be solely to enable geo-localized chats. A dedicated geographical chat platform. The main focus would be to connect with people in specific locations.
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General comments

Shubhankar Kulkarni
Shubhankar Kulkarni2 years ago
A good solution for lost-and-found items.
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Darko Savic
Darko Savic2 years ago
Shubhankar Kulkarni Will add this to the "why" section
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