Watch Artist Mess with Google Maps Using a Wagon Full of Smartphones!

I sure love a good bit of mischief!

February 4, 2020
Red wagon

gettyimages / RCarner

The trolliest artist since Banksy took to the streets with a red wagon loaded with 99 smartphones each running Google Maps. As he dragged along often empty streets, the phones report back to the mothership registering as slow-moving traffic. He's turning green streets to red and messing with the mega-algorithm! Brilliant. 

The artist Simon Weckert rented 99 second-hand android phones and got to work messing with Google. From his site:

" 99 second hand smartphones are transported in a handcart to generate virtual traffic jam in Google Maps. Through this activity, it is possible to turn a green street red which has an impact in the physical world by navigating cars on another route to avoid being stuck in traffic. "

What a troll! I use maps all the time to make sure I'm taking the fastest route home (often forgetting I'm just going home to do chores... maybe I should start taking the longest path...) and this guy proves how possible it is to mess with the machines that control us.