There’s plenty of hype about artificial intelligence, machine learning, automation, smart cars, intelligent devices and self-regulating systems. Cars can drive themselves. Fridges can order food. Everything as a service and a gadget.
Yet it remains a concept that’s hard to define, as the World Economic Forum found when it asked numerous experts and city technology officers what it meant and the value it delivered. From citizen-based intelligence to strengthening public trust to widgets designed to make life easier, the answers were as varied as the technologies cited. However, the real value of the smart city perhaps doesn’t lie in the innovative “wow” factor, but more in the reliability factor. As Simon Ric-Hansen, senior solutions architect at Atvance points out, it’s the efficiency of city functions that citizens can rely on.
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