What is WindowSwap?

Here’s A Simple Website That Lets You Look Out Someone Else’s Window

by Terry Heick

Need a break?

I recently discovered a website that gives you a healthier alternative to checking twitter or facebook–it lets you look out someone else’s window.

Normally when I need a break from work, I take a walk, read a book, meditate, or do a short burst of exercise. I’ve watched birds land on windowsills in Brooklyn, people get on trains in Malaysia, and trees move softly in the breeze in Sweden. It’s pretty incredible but maybe I’m just getting old and am easily impressed.

Using the site is simple–click the ‘Open a new window to somewhere in the world’ and that’s it. You’ve spun the virtual wheel and who knows where you’ll end up. Don’t like the view? Try another window until you find on that you do.

You can also submit your ‘window’ as well if you’re interested in sharing your view of the world.

I’ve discovered a few wrinkles in the two days or so I’ve used it. One, it doesn’t work particularly well on mobile. The screen would freeze on my iPad no matter what browser I used. The same happened with my phone.

Also, I was under the impression that the videos were all live but after watching the same person walk down the same pier in Japan three times in an hour, I realized that the video was looping. I just watched a front sunlit front porch in India–only to realize that it’s currently almost midnight in New Dehli. If the videos aren’t live, it definitely takes some of the charm out of it–for me, anyway.

So it goes.

Either way, it’s an interesting idea and you can find it here. Fill your wanderlust and see the world. This and Google Earth–combined with books and my telescope–are currently my three of my favorite ways to take a break from reality for a while.

Here’s A Simple Website That Lets You Look Out People’s Window