Tour Rio with a Brazilian Woman Using Computer Science to Escape Her Favela, Part of the Google Project Beyond the Map
Watch a video from Google’s Rio: Beyond the Map about Paloma, a young woman from Maré, one of the Rio de Janiero’s most dangerous favelas or slums. In her own words, Paloma describes how she is overcoming all obstacles to pursue a college education in computer science.
The 2016 Summer Olympics are underway this week in Rio. The opening ceremony is August 5, and the games will run until August 21. Athletes from 42 Olympic sports will compete for 161 medals for men, 136 for women, and nine mixed medals. Billions of people around the world are expected to watch the games on TV, and hundreds of thousands are traveling to Brazil to see them in person.
If you’re not planning to go, you can still explore the city thanks to Google, and its newly-released Rio: Beyond the Map. The project’s title refers to Rio’s favelas, found throughout the city. Unlike the well-known tourist areas Ipanema and Copacabana, favelas are so neglected by the government they are not even mapped. These extremely poor neighborhoods are home to 1.4 million people or 20 percent of the city’s population, and many of them live without addresses or mail delivery. Mapping the favelas is part of Google’s “On the Map” initiative.
According to Google, Rio: Beyond the Map is a collection of online exhibits that include “360° panoramas with Street View technology, some 3,000 images from photo archives and art exhibits, virtual reality tours with Google Cardboard and videos.” You can take an interactive tour of Rio’s best-known monuments such as the Christ the Redeemer statue atop Corcovado mountain.