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Smart Cities And The Internet Of Things

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All Streets, Ben Fry

Why should you care if you're in advertising? Because creating smart spaces means that you can deliver retail or branding experiences that are personalized for your audiences while collecting more information about your audiences than you know what to do with yet. Smart spaces have the capacity to create highly curated experiences that matter. They can provide useful or entertaining information, they can connect people and places, they can streamline processes and expose invisible inefficiencies. They can make lives better.

That, my friends, is return on investment.

Here are some forward-looking technology companies that are creating the infrastructures for smart cities.

One of the projects is being driven by an assumption that as objects around us become smart and begin to embody the functionality of our computers and mobile devices, the world will transform into an Internet of Things.

The theory of Internet of Things led to the development of a non-profit organization that is creating a standardized protocol for communication amongst those things. The Internet Protocol for Smart Objects [IPSO] Alliance, funded by companies such as Cisco, Sun Microsystems and Ericsson, aims to promote networking amongst smart objects and deliver information gathered by those objects.

This technology offers wireless communication and real-time data such as temperature, pressure, vibrations, and energy measurements between the devices that surround us. This can be achieved by developing a standardized protocol that is open and ubiquitous.

What that means is that IPSO is developing a common language for all the objects in the world. Things in our houses will be able to talk to each other; our cars will be able to talk to things in our house as we approach it; our transportation infrastructures will be synchronized and help us to connect; our power grids will be able to intelligently distribute power across the country.

Cisco has taken this thinking one step further in their Sustainable Urbanization program. They are developing a holistic, global, intelligent urban initiative to create intelligent cities.


Wlm Elfrink, Chief Globalization Officer and Executive Vice President of Cisco Services

For example, for Incheon Metropolitan City in Korea, Cisco is transforming their Free Economic Zone (IFEZ) into a center for globalization expertise, driving "better city management, enhanced quality of life for citizens, and support[ing] sustainable economic development."


In San Francisco, Cisco is rigging public buses with Wi-Fi and in Amsterdam they are developing a GPS handheld that monitors all public transportation in the city. The idea is to offer attractive alternative transportation solutions in order to minimize carbon consumption.


The applications for Sustainable Urbanization are endless: from energy-efficient homes, office buildings, factories, hospitals patient monitoring, home automation, building automation, factory monitoring, smart cities, smart grids, energy management and transportation.

The technology is in place, the ideas are already here, the business models are compelling and yet, for some strange reason, we are stalling on the implementation

Let's all make something smart in the coming year.

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