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How can AI be used to shape up smart cities?

Governments must have social agreements with users instead of subscriptions, says industry expert

| | Mar 19, 2018 | 1:00 am
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Dubai, UAE, 19 March 2018: As Dubai moves towards becoming a smart city, it is also important to introspect how artificial intelligence (AI) can be used to shape up smart cities, said Bettina Tratz-Ryan, Research Vice President Smart Ecosystem and Cities, Gartner.

Sharing her thoughts on the subject, Tratz-Ryan said: “In a smart environment, AI can play a crucial role in energy management, help you decide what kind of temperature is good for your indoor environment and lead a better life. Data gathered to augment AI, would result in better energy savings.”

Tratz-Ryan explained that AI is an execution mechanism for smart city environments, because it would go into people’s profiles, look at services used in the past, help understand people’s preferences and even go to the extent of understanding their social patterns, with their consent. She said, “In a scenario where there is a handshake between AI and infrastructure, better environments are created for smarter living.”

Offering a case in point, Tratz-Ryan said: “If AI is integrated into a real estate development, and if elderly people are moving around the community, AI would guide them on which paths are safe for them or not and even alert emergency services in case of an emergency.”

Speaking on AI’s challenges, Tratz-Ryan said: “The biggest challenge is data privacy and whether users would allow intimate tracking of their likes and preferences or would they consider it an invasion of their privacy.” The other challenge, she said, is data quality, because data acquired is only based on what data is shared and there is no way to tell whether the data shared is true or false. For governments to counter this challenge, Tratz-Ryan said, they must have social agreements with users, instead of a subscription, so that users can truthfully share their data for a better living.

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