Malaysian streets on Google

PETALING JAYA, Malaysia - Google is collaborating with Tourism Malaysia to record uniquely Malaysian locations to be featured on its Google Map Street View.

"We are happy to work with Google to showcase Malaysia to millions of people all over the world through Google Maps," said Tourism Malaysia acting director-general Datuk Azizan Noordin.

Google Street View is a feature on Google Maps that allows users to view and navigate 360-degree street-level imagery.

Google and the ministry are now conducting an online poll to let the public decide which locations should be included in this project.

Malaysians will be able to choose the places under five categories and even suggest their favourite locations in a write-in box for those not listed.

Imagery of the sites will then be captured through the Google Trike a specially-designed bicycle mounted with a camera that can capture and collect street-level imagery in places less accessible by car.

"The trike will help feature even more of Malaysia's culture, heritage, charm, attractions and landmarks that make us such a special and compelling destination," Azizan said in a statement here yesterday.

Malaysians can vote for categories of historical, tourism, cultural, urban and architecture, and nature or locations on the poll at maps.google.com.my/svtrike, until the end of the month.

Google will then tally the votes and choose interesting ideas from the write-in suggestions before publicly announcing the "winners", which would be given priority by the Street View trike.

"By featuring Malaysians' suggestions of their favourite parts of our country, viewers from around the world will be able to discover the best of Malaysia through local eyes," said Azizan.

"We're working hard to get Street View up and running for Malaysia, and the trike is an excellent way to start adding amazing imagery to showcase Malaysia's history and culture," said Google Malaysia country head Sajith Sivanandan.

Images collected by the trike will be processed and stitched together over several months while faces and licence plates will be blurred to protect people's privacy.