A subsidiary of Google has created software that monitors the movements of urban residentsFebruary 4, 2019
When planning urban development specialists need data on the movement and activity of citizens. The current method of collecting such information is time consuming, time consuming and often biased. The developers of Sidewalk Labs, a subsidiary of Google, offer to collect this data directly from mobile devices.
Replica, the program created by them, reportedly collects information about the location of smartphone users, anonymizes it and “averages”, and then uses it in a simulation that reproduces the real city. According to the developers, this software allows you to get comprehensive information about the movements of people in a particular locality – including what vehicles and interchanges they use, when and for what purposes (for example, at what time and on which roads most people in the city center usually he goes by car to work and goes to the nearest stores where he goes for shopping).
Sidewalk Labs claims that they use data from mobile operators and companies accessing the location of users’ smartphones with the consent of the latter as source data, and also assert that the information involved in the application is impersonal and does not carry personal identifiers – it cannot be used calculate a specific person.
Interestingly, in some US cities, in particular, in Chicago, Portland and Kansas City, Replica is ready to use. Officials believe that the use of this software will stimulate the development of cities and make them more convenient, as well as help utilities to determine the best time for repairs.
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