2016 was a very interesting year from KnowNow’s perspective. We made a decision to pivot, we won some battles, lost some skirmishes and we have made some customers very happy. We also had to say goodbye to some old friends too. As Dave & I both said to each other at our end of year review “it has been a rollercoaster of a year!”.
Today I was at an event hosted by University of Portsmouth at the Emirates Spinnaker Tower (quite possibly my favourite UK structure). The event was to kick start a discussion on the future of urban Portsmouth. Prof. Steffen Lehmann had brought some serious players to the panel that was to discuss Portsmouth as a sustainable city by 2030. Asking the question… What is the vision to get there?
This is KnowNow’s home city in many ways. David & I were born here, went to school locally and our business is based in the city and one of us is a season ticket holder! We are a Portsmouth company. Yet we also have a global outlook with customers in SE Asia, London as well as down the road. Our home city has tended to lag behind when it comes to being seen as a ‘smart place’. Now this may have changed.
Cognicity – the business accelerator KnowNow participated in 2015.
When it came to KnowNow’s innovative new consent tool what we needed was a view of the market. We needed to move from a hunch to a viable innovation backed up with evidence.
A consequence of being on a business accelerator is that you take a more methodical based approach to your innovation validation. This means fail fast and do the bare minimum and push only what has a positive response. Do more of that and less of the things that are not so positive. This is an iterative experience.
For smart cities to be considered a success they will have many different types of services e.g. for health, mobility, energy and crime. How services are delivered, measured and valued will be transformed and citizens will now consume experiences and share most things that were previously owned. It will just make sense that way. However, there is a big assumption in this futuristic view. Consent.
What’s the big assumption?
That citizens will have allowed some quite personal information to be consumed, shared and distributed. Yet, this laissez faire view does not necessarily work for all. In particular when it comes to the European countries with the new GDPR, a growing number of citizens are hesitant about sharing their data freely, according to the latest MEF report some 41% of citizens have this concern. Yet a total clamp down on personal information use is not appropriate either, because no personal information share means no experiences and no transformed services.
Knowing that it is flooding is one thing. What would be more relevant is being able to do something about it pro-actively before the situation gets out of control. Flooding is going to happen, no amount of barriers will stop some floods. The approach is… how to live and adapt to flood events. Continue reading →
KnowNow will be undertaking a mini tour of its IoT demonstrator during September. The story kicks off with an update to the demo we already have showcasing IBM Bluemix at the IoT Lab in Hursley. The demo is a bite sized version of BeatHouse.
Your data is being used by many organisations and yet you have minimal control. Sometimes the data used will benefit you. Sometimes it will be for the benefit of others. The balance is starting to shift in our ever connected world where the gains of giving away your data are not as clear cut as they used to be. Now we have more risks to worry about, more threats to manage and yet even more benefit to be enjoyed if we did share our information.
Having just come back to the UK from a smart cities conversation on the other side of the world, I would like to share some thoughts. The role of KnowNow is to prepare the IT architectural blueprint for this new smart place. In effect create the wiring and usage diagram of where IT will be deployed and how it will be used. As much as you have an architectural blueprint for a plot to be built showing the materials and measurements. The IT infrastructure needs similar design outputs to ensure that the IT works as required, when required for the right person.