If you were to take a tour of Europe's tiny, rocky Faroe Islands in Google Street View, you might see a lot of sheep.
But you can't take a tour of the Faroe Islands in Google Street View, unlike much of the rest of Europe. A resident of the North Atlantic islands has turned to her sheep to try and fix that.
Durita Dahl Andreassen, of the tourist organization Visit Faroe Islands, has fastened a 360-degree camera, powered by a solar panel, to the back of her sheep. The camera takes photographs as the animal grazes along the hillsides that she can then upload to Street View.
She's using this "Sheep View 360" program to get Google's attention, starting a petition to entice the Internet giant to turn its eye on the archipelago located roughly midway between Scotland, Iceland and Norway.
“The Faroe Islands may be rugged and remote but this collection of 18 islands in the North Atlantic also provide some of the world’s most magical landscapes and it is time that this hidden Nordic nation is revealed to the world,” Andreassen said in a post on the Visit Faroe Islands website Monday.
The Faroe Islands, a part of Denmark whose name may in fact derive from the Old Norse word "faer," meaning sheep, according to the CIA Fact Book, has a population of just over 50,000 people. That compares to 80,000 sheep, The Guardian reported.
The sheep rarely notice the camera and continue to graze as it captures a picture a minute, Andreassen said in a video promoting the project.
Sheep View imitates Google Street View, which captures images in 360 degrees that give users a sense of what streets look like from their computers or phones; it's available on most of America's roads, and throughout much of Europe as well, including even a few spots in the even-more-remote Greenland. Parts of Germany, Austria, Belarus and a few other nations are not included in Google's current European coverage.
Of course, Sheep View doesn't have quite the same reach as Street View, and Andreassen's project aims to have Google bring Street View cameras to the Faroe Islands, where she argues they're much-needed.
“In order to cover the big sweeping Faroese roads and the whole of the breath-taking landscapes, we need Google to come and map them,” Andreassen said.