Google Maps Hacks at the Factory Tour

I asked about Google Maps hacks, like this week’s Chicago Crime site, at the Google Factory Tour. Particularly, I asked if their agreements with Navteq and Tele Atlas, who provide the underlying map data for the service, would require Google to shut down sites that used the map data without Google’s permission. They responded that they had every intention to not shut them down as long as their licenses permit it, and one of the engineers insinuated that they might be working on a Google Maps API or a similar way to build on top of Maps (he actually said, “to make them not hacks,” by which I think he meant not unauthorized). They also said they hoped that the data licensors would realize that increased traffic benefits them.