Google Japan before and after

The online news cycle moves at a blistering pace. It's easy to forget that, while the story of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami that occurred last March may move from the front page, individuals are still struggling to cope with the widespread devastation on the island.

Google took it upon itself to document the structural destruction in some of the hardest hit areas in its Google Maps Street View function. The tech giant covered more than 27,000 miles to provide a 360-degree imagery archive of the communities that are still reeling from the natural disasters nine months later.

Google has even started a new web site to allow viewers to compare before and after images of specific areas. The Build The Memory site is a stark reminder that, while the world marches on, there's plenty of recovery left in Japan. Head over to the site for a closer look.