Everyone who has played Ubisoft’s latest hacking game title, Watch Dogs, knows about what Aiden Pearce, the main character in the game, has in his smartphone. For those who do not know, his smartphone is basically a mobile NSA tracking and hacking ‘supercomputer’, having the power to disable traffic lights, fiddle with bridges, smartphones, power lines and even the city’s grid.
Although in the real world you cannot do all of this with just a smartphone, Ubisoft has apparently made a ‘light’ version (without all the hacking features of course) of the app, which is available in your browser. Real world data from cities such as Berlin, Paris and even London can be displayed and accessed via the Watch_Dogs WeAreData browser app, displaying publicly accessible location-based data.
The application in question appears to display where mobile phones are, show and read tweets from the locations they were triggered, link CCTV feeds, traffic lights and more. It is said that each city displays a host of data, including transportation, network nodes, city infrastructure such as ATMs and public toilets, social media data from Twitter, Instagram, Foursquare and Flickr, all displayed with location data and positioned accordingly.
Though this seems as an incredible tool, it has its limitation. All data gathered by the app is said to come from sources which gave their consent on sharing location information. There is no information or data from unauthorized sources from, let’s say, the government. Nonetheless, it is fun to click around and see how the connected world is and looks like daily, and even spy on ‘unsuspected’ victims who post location tags and/or pictures all around these cities. Anyone interested in looking at one of the three available cities can go on the Watch_Dogs WeAreData website here.