Google Maps is moving you off the street and inside local businesses with a new feature called Business Photos that shows you 360-degree images of store interiors using Street View technology. Business Photos lets you peek inside select stores in 10 U.S. cities and surrounding areas including Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Washington, D.C. The new feature is also available in Australia, France, Japan, New Zealand and the U.K.
Google has been very apologetic about the fact that open businesses are being incorrectly reported as closed on Google Places. It's incredibly easy to report business as closed on the service, and Google has promised on its blog to fix the problem. Let's back things up for a second and look at the Google Places service.
By combining business intelligence and two foundations of Web 2.0 -- search and mapping -- a police department in the US state of Kentucky has built a brand-new window into crime. This Web-based BI portal allows patrol officers to enter data -- or even pieces of data such as a few numbers from a license plate -- into a simple search interface and retrieve information from their own databases and those of neighboring towns.