We live in a world where everything is connected to everything. This concept, known as the Internet of Things (IoT), refers to smart devices that are interconnected and are constantly collecting and exchanging data with one another. From smart phones that collect information about our daily lives to smart homes with automated systems, the IoT is meant to make our lives easier, and most importantly it helps us live smarter. As more and more cities are moving towards becoming Smart Cities, we continue to find ways to improve our quality of life, including the use of Intelligent Transport Systems.
The 2016 ITS World Congress is in full swing in Melbourne, Australia. This year’s week long assembly is full of stimulating presentations and discussions of what an Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) is, how we can create them, and their impacts with the purpose of efficiently managing transportation assets and improving road safety.
Globally, we continue to witness new potential for less costly and more powerful ITS through the likes of Intelligent Bus Networks, e-ticketing integration, driverless cars and active traffic management with the aim to improve road safety, vehicle flow and thus reduce air pollution and cut emissions.
ITS covers a number of types of transport including rail, freight and car and the associated technologies are a plenty. Globally, Hexagon Geospatial has been thoroughly involved in ITS projects covering rail and freight, as well as Smart Cities projects, helping create a common operating picture for both spatial and non-spatial data. These projects have enabled the dissemination of real-time data to desktop, web and mobile devices to enhance livability, workability and sustainability.
Using Hexagon Geospatial technologies today, we start building our future vision of an ITS to not only run efficient transport networks, but also have access to predictive analytics to make better decisions with more accuracy, faster. This can benefit future services planning based on population trends and land zone changes, as well as having access to behavioral analytics from ticketing systems to aid flow and manage demand, provide specialized services to segmented users groups and even realignment of services based on customer insights.
But can an ITS be isolated from a Smart City? Smart Cities strive to improve the overall quality of life by using interconnected smart devices and the IoT to understand residents’ needs, and this must incorporate ITS.
We are fast approaching a time where systems and networks can seamlessly talk to each other and achieve complete interoperability – everything connected to everything. A future of connectivity and communication between vehicles, law enforcement to traffic management systems, emergency services to road incident data, public transport to events and so on.
With the prediction that by 2050 70 percent of the world’s population will be living in cities, an enormous amount of importance needs to be put on future plans of incorporating ITS with Smart Cities and IoT. What is our vision of an ITS? How do we connect and incorporate an ITS into a Smart City? And how does the IoT tie into it?