Simon Weckert Short Biography – Wiki
Simon Weckert is identified as an artist in Berlin who has tracked Google Maps into creating traffic jam alerts by attracting 99 phones — with their location services on — slowly around the German capital in a handcart.
Simon Weckert Explains “Google Maps Hack”
He told CNN that he came up with the idea after attending a demonstration in Berlin and noticing how people in a confined space created a “virtual traffic jam” on Google Maps when they were slowly moving forward.
The artist has named his performance “Google Maps Hacks”, as he took to the streets of Berlin with a small red cart and a pile of second-hand phones, which he was believed to have borrowed from friends and rented from smartphone companies.
While walking on roads near the River Spree, he maintained to track Google Maps into scanning the phones were in slow-moving traffic.
Later, this appeared to cause Google Maps to give out traffic jam alerts for the streets he was walking by.
One of his virtual traffic jams included Google Berlin’s offices, he revealed.
According to one of his statements on his website, his work caused “an impact in the physical world” by rerouting cars who wanted to avoid being trapped in traffic jam.
Wecker calls out that his work highlights the “blindness” that shows up when people think of data as “objective, unambiguous and interpretation free”.
The statement added that this was a rare case and that wagons were not yet a form of transport which its research team had cracked, and that he is not the only individual to have played with Google’s data collection methods.
Weckert’s performed his performance before the 15th anniversary of Google Maps’ establishment.