North Korea has long been a bit of a blank, unknown wasteland for Google Maps, but that changes today. Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) has had help from “a community of citizen cartographers” to put an array of streets, names, and points of interest across North Korea onto Google Maps.
The change is most evident in Pyongyang, as seen in the images above, where the capital of the reclusive state is suddenly looking more like a regular city, replete with parks, highways, and subway stations. It also allows user-generated photos from Panoramio to appear all over the city.
All this extra detail, as Google explains on its LatLong blog this morning, comes courtesy of crowdsourcing using the company’s own MapMaker tools. It took several years of work, all of which is now live for you to see on Google Maps (embedded below).
Google chairman Eric Schmidt was in North Korea for a humanitarian trip at the start of this month, where he also called upon authorities to embrace the internet. When web access is finally made available to the country’s citizens, they also might like to check out their nation on Google Maps.
Google Maps Zoom in on North Korea