Eight years ago, Circuit City closed its remaining stores, Michael Jackson died, and Barack Obama became the 44th President of the United States. Eight years ago was also the last time Google's Street View cameras got a major upgrade. According to Wired, the company has started rolling out updated cameras to its fleet of picture-snapping cars.
The new rig now features just seven cameras, down from the 15 mounted on the old version. Each camera has a 20MP sensor, and two 'cans' on the front and back for laser radar. All these upgrades will make for higher-resolution pictures with enhanced image clarity.
The old Street View camera rig.
Google also pointed out that machine learning has made the Street View cars even more useful. The company's algorithms analyze photos for street name and numbers, and add them to Google Maps if necessary. Google is also looking to improve this technology further, with answers for questions like "What's the name of the pink store next to the church on the corner?" That's still a ways off, but the enhanced cameras will help make that a reality.