Before heading out from home or while traveling, we check for traffic snarls or bottlenecks on major roads in Google Maps and plan our route accordingly. But what if we say the details showing on it can be tampered? Yes, a man from Berlin tampered it and created a fake traffic jam with the help of 99 smartphones loaded in a little wagon.
A Berlin-based artist Simon Weckert has published a video on his Youtube blog channel examing the values and impact of technology. In the video, a man pulling a wagon of 99 smartphones with Google Maps navigation turned on walks down some city streets, which also include the street outside Google’s office in berlin.
As he pulls the wagon slowly, Google recognizes high no. of users resulting in slow-moving traffic and marks the street red for bad traffic on Maps. This whole thing results in other drivers using Maps in the area routed to avoid traffic. Simon even took the cart full of smartphones to Google’s Office street in Berlin for the fake traffic jam.
Generally, Google determines traffic by using other people’s smartphone Maps. More the individuals using Google Maps in an area, worse the traffic would be, and Google changes the color of that street. Thus, the navigation system by not knowing that the traffic jam is created by pulling a cart with a bunch of smartphones suggests the users to avoid those streets.
Hopefully, it won’t be happening again, but Google should take measures to prevent these kinds of spoofed traffic jams, which could be done by any individual with ideal resources.