An Estonia-based startup is making it simple to decide where you should move to next.
Drawing on data and images from Google Street View, Teleport looks around cities and neighbourhoods to allow people to simply determine if they could see themselves living there.
Teleport co-founder Silver Keskkula outlines how it all works in a Medium post.
He begins by plotting 10,000 randomized points throughout a city. He then grabs images taken with Google Street View and runs them through computer-vision algorithms that identify objects, buildings, parks and even people. It then offers a short sentence to describe them. The idea is that words are much easier to search words than images.
Keskkula’s final step is calculating which phases and words are most common, like “a playground,” “a motorcycle” (for those seeking a motorcycle culture), or a gelato shop. Teleport allows you to select whether you want to live around parks, restaurants, quiet streets or other things.
In his post, Keskkula says that the idea of extracting information from Google Street View was inspired by MIT Media Lab’s StreetScore. The project used machine learning to rank the safety of 3,000 streets in New York and Boston.
The website couldn’t be easier to use; you simply input needs and desires in categories like cost of living, quality of life, job and career, and city infrastructure. You then add your monthly rent budget, your occupation and your monthly income. Within seconds, you’ll be given a list of cities you “match” with.
As for being able to actually afford a house in your desired ‘hood (especially in Toronto and Vancouver), you’re on your own.