A9 Maps is an amazing street-mapping site that allows you to search maps in over 20 major U.S. cities and view street-level pictures of the addresses. A9 is owned by the popular online retailer Amazon.
An interesting article in Business 2.0 by Eric Schonfeld discusses the way that A9 goes about creating these maps as well as their plans to do this for the entire U.S.
From the article –
A9 also powers its own stand-alone search engine (www.a9.com), where Dorfman and his colleagues are trying out all sorts of ideas for improving search. One of these ideas — the one that has us prowling Manhattan, block by block — is to drive around the country and take a street-level picture of every building, geo-code each picture by latitude and longitude, and marry the images with an address database to create the ultimate local search engine.
You can read the entire article by Eric Schonfeld on Business 2.0 @ Where the Web Meets the World.