Are you interested in history? And if you were to ask yourself, "What do I know about my own city or town? How did it look like 50 years ago? Was it the same or not? What has changed?" - would you be able to answer these questions? What matters here is, are you willing to get the answers? If yes, read on.
Let's go even further: imagine that people all around would unite and try to recollect the entire history. Do you think it'd be possible? The answer is yes! A new project created by We are what we do (founded by Oxford graduate and former teacher Nick Stanhope) Historypin is a real discovery. It opens the way to the past - in the literal sense of the word.
The application allows users to use the location and date of a picture to, so to say, 'pin' it to Google Maps (particularly those places where Google Street View is available), then overlay the historical photograph and compare it with the view of the contemporary location. Thus, you may upload any pictures, audio clips, memories, stories, whatever you like. They could be related to your family, street, school, restaurant, museum, cinema, i.e. anything you consider to be exciting. Just imagine: you are in London and you get the opportunity to mash up the street view of today's Piccadilly with the Piccadilly of 1940's. Isn't that amazing?
Is it possible to meet a carriage in the street? The answer is yes! Historypin can do it.
The app also allows users to add content in a few different ways - to take modern copies of historical images, capture modern historical moments as they happen, and scan and upload old images. So, what makes this device so irresistible?
It is said that people forget about their roots. The distance between different generations and cultures grows longer and longer. Why does it happen so? Well, this question is one of those that can be called 'beautifully imaginative' as there is no certain answer to it. There is no doubt that nowadays we are losing personal recollections. Furthermore, we all sometimes face situations when we talk to our grandparents and feel that there is an abyss between us. What can bring us together? The answer is so simple: the history can act as such link. What can be done to change this way of things? Again, we are coming back to Historypin. Moreover, it may lead us to mutual understanding not only on a personal level but on neighborhood and national levels as well. Sharing family history does matter in our society.
The price of the application can not be beat: it is completely free. This is a vivid example of what can be called a passion project. The app has so far been an extraordinary success, with over 600,000 people using the site every month and about 60,584 photos, videos, audio clips and stories having been pinned so far. Enjoy!