Man or Machine? It Can Be Both

The sci-fi genre is riddled with plots where machines take over the world with disturbing results for humans. In reality, we are seeing machines become a partner rather than an adversary as smart IoT machines are being used by humans to supplement tasks.

Keeping Infrastructure Secure

New York City's Department of Buildings has paired inspectors with drones to conduct enhanced visual reviews of building facades with greater efficiency. Drones are equipped with video cameras, lidar, thermal imaging, photogrammetry and location software to quickly gather a wide variety of information for inspectors to review. In fact, these vehicles can capture images at angles nearly impossible for inspectors to accomplish. The department found that certain physical examinations, such as sounding and probes, still needed to be conducted by qualified professionals for a full inspection but by speeding up other inspections, their personnel are freed up to conduct work that requires human intervention.

Similarly, sensors are being used to alleviate maintenance issues in roadways. Research from Michigan State University showed that sensors embedded to create "smart pavement" could pinpoint areas and time for preventive intervention. Research shows that for every $1 spent on preventive smart pavement maintenance, there is a savings of $4 to $10 on rehabilitation.

Keeping People Moving

Trenton, NJ has introduced the Trenton Mobility & Opportunity: Vehicles Equity System (MOVES) Project which aims to bring 100 self-driving electric shuttles to address better transportation access for citizens. The system will be designed to serve the 70% of households that do not have access to a car and have limited public transportation options - addressing a market currently not met by human-driven vehicles. The vehicles will transport between four and eight passengers who will be able to hail a ride from a smartphone app or a kiosk. The vehicles will maintain two-way communication with a central operations center so that they are monitored by public safety organizations.

Keeping Cities Quiet

Sensors are currently being used to reduce noise pollution in New York and Philadelphia. Similar to red light cameras, the technology can automatically identify and ticket vehicles that surpass a certain decibel threshold. This includes noise from engines, music, and mufflers that registers five decibels above a certain background noise level. By automating this policing, city staff are freed up to attend to more pressing matters.

There are a number of events scheduled that address the development and current-day use of IoT devices and sensors for more efficient community and infrastructure support.

  • Accelerating Industrial Digital Transformation and Sustainability (February 14-17, 2022; Orlando, FL; Virtual option available March 7-10, 2022) - Technologies like cloud, machine learning, edge computing, IoT, cybersecurity technology, additive manufacturing, augmented reality, and more are enabling new business processes and obscuring traditional functional boundaries. OT, IT, and ET teams are growing their skills and capabilities and transforming real-time operations. Discover what peers and industry leaders are doing today and what steps they are taking to prepare for the future.
  • Modernizing Your Agency's Processes to Optimize Infrastructure Funding (February 17, 2022; webcast) - Thanks to the new federal infrastructure bill, numerous state and local agencies stand to receive significant amounts of funding that will virtually transform their missions. Learn how to modernize and optimize operations to drive efficiency and better outcomes.
  • Smart Cities Connect Conference and Expo (April 4-7, 2022; Columbus, OH) - Join a thoughtful community of decision-makers to empower smart cities at all stages of growth. Learn how to accelerate the adoption of smart technology solutions, aid in problem solving, and amplify city resources for the betterment of cities, communities, and their citizens.
  • IoT Device Cybersecurity Guidance for the Federal Government: Establishing IoT Device Cybersecurity Requirements (white paper) - IoT technology creates many opportunities for organizations in support of mission objectives. IoT technology may also present security challenges throughout the lifecycle if proper considerations are not made during the acquisition and integration of an IoT device. Existing NIST risk management guidance helps organizations identify, communicate, and satisfy the security requirements to support mission and business functions and manage risk across the organization from the system level to the organizational level.
  • Internet of Things (IoT) in the Federal Government (white paper) - The integration of the IoT in the federal government is ongoing and accelerating. To facilitate that expansion, federal IT service providers must invest resources into becoming experts in IoT operations and maintaining best practices. The federal government's ability to implement IoT solutions intelligently and securely will be critical in maintaining U.S. geopolitical influence in the coming decade.

Find more resources on IoT and smart cities at GovEvents and GovWhitePapers.

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