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#Innovating for #Cities: #OpenData, #Sensors, #InternetOfThings

Posted on May 4th, 2015

NYC Smart City and Energy Data

05/04/2015 @UrbanFuturesLab, 15 Metro Tech, Brooklyn, NY

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Peter Madden @thepmadden talked about the #Catapults which were set up by the British government to convert ideas into commercial products. His company within the program was started 18 months ago with four objectives:

  1. urban innovation centre in London
  2. cities lab – data, models, visualization
  3. cross disciplinary teams
  4. projects across UK & globally

They have been active in several initiatives include:

  1. Make city data open, accessible and simple to use. This is structured work – collecting data and making it available to entrepreneurs (not hackathons). They have a transportation API. They also just received a grant to release urban-model data in a similar fashion.
  1. Sensing London in which they deploy low cost sensors throughout the royal parks. The sensors include those for light, pollution, sound, etc. + usage mapping by demographics, income, etc. The data are collected to see how parks are used. One of the sensors is a low cost air pollution sensor. They include Boris bike rental data. They overlay air quality with cycling data and eventually would like to see real-time cycle-rerouting to avoid the worst quality air.
  1. City-wide IoT demonstration in the small city of #MiltonKeynes. Sensors and beacons in each parking space within the city transmit the location of vacant spaces using the old TV spectrum. A smart parking app would have the potential to reduce the auto-generated air pollution by eliminating up to 25% of city driving which is done in search of parking spots.

Peter emphasized that projects are collaborations and at a city scale with the goal of studying and mitigating a problem. He said that there are many other initiatives described on their web site. Some further examples are

  1. smart litterbins that report when they are filled
  2. smart lampposts – moving to LEDs, but also including connectivity
  3. Using EEG data to analyze how the blind view the city and to identify the environments which create the most stress.

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