Google is building in Australia with LEGOs. I’m guessing that Build With Chrome originated with some Google developer’s 20% time. Perhaps a developer originally from Australia or New Zealand who likes playing Minecraft decided to create something a bit similar.
As there are dozens of Minecraft clones, instead of using Minecraft voxel cubes, they decided to use an even better-known building material like LEGO bricks. Then, they implemented it as a mashup of Google Maps and LEGO bricks with 3D view close up and 2D for the rest of it.
Read the Google Australia blog entry about it, and you can watch a short video of Sydney Harbor bridge being built.
So here’s how it goes: You find a part of Australia that you fancy occupying, then start constructing your own house, image, whatever, using virtual LEGO bricks. Move quick because all the well-known places are going first, and it’s first come, first get.
Google realized that spammers or people with unsavory messages might build their message into the Australian
soil plastic so all images have to be approved. That conjures up thoughts of interesting job interviews: “Well, basically you have to look at LEGO models across all of Australia/New Zealand and approve or reject them.”
If you’re 17 years or younger, you’ll need parental approval to get involved. “Well, yes you can get married and have sex at age 16, but you can’t build LEGO bricks with Chrome unless we say so….”
On a more sensible note, this was started in Australia first and then will be rolled out in other countries. There’s actually a serious side to this: the WebGL support in Chrome is shown off with realistic-looking LEGO bricks in 3D mode.
The image with this shows what you’ll find at Uluru (Ayer’s rock), where there’s evidently a tribute to the Italian plumber immigrants to Australia next to an Android.
Now, go grab your spot and build something that will stand the test of time…. But I’m not holding my breath waiting to see a Starship Enterprise or a working Dual Core CPU….