Google Street View Now Goes Back In Time All The Way To Ye Olden Days Of 2007

The Freedom Tower in NYC, then and now.

The Freedom Tower in NYC, then and now.

Ah, those misty, water-colored memories of the time way back in 2007, when we had a different guy in the White House and the word “selfie” wasn’t the bane of social conversations yet. If you’ve got a hankering for days gone by, Google’s updated Street View imagery can take you back in time — only so far as seven years though, so don’t go looking for your childhood treehouse to suddenly appear on the map.

In a new feature for its desktop maps announced on its blog yesterday, Google’s Street View imagery will now allow users to check out historical imagery from past collections, in essence creating something like a “digital time capsule of the world,” as Google calls it.

For example, here’s the construction over the years of New York City’s Freedom Tower, or on a more somber note, you can view how natural disasters have wreaked havoc on landmarks in places like Japan after the 2011 earthquake, and how those spots are recovering now.

Again, you won’t be able to go back and make sure your parents kiss a the Under the Sea dance in order to preserve your own existence, because Google didn’t have a Street View car at that time anyway, but it could be pretty neat to see how all the old, interesting spots in your town have turned into a Starbucks. Or depressing, really. Either way, time travel!

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