How a smart city could get cars to talk to each other and more

A smart city means many devices will hook up with each other and communicate.

Our obsession with mobile phones might soon help our cities get a little smarter. Researchers at TU Darmstadt and the University of Kassel wanted to find out what a connected city would look like.

Enter the Cocoon project, which offers a glimpse of what a truly smart city would be like if all sensors communicated though a wireless connection. Ideally, the sensor network would receive and transmit information.

Communication is key.

According to Rolf Jakoby of TU Darmstadt:

"Current types of antennae radiate omnidirectionally, like light bulbs. We intend to create conditions, under which antennae will, in the future, behave like spotlights that, once they have located a sought device, will track it, while suppressing interference by stray electromag­netic radiation from other devices that might also be present in the area."

In a smart city, cars would talk to each other to avoid traffic jams, sensors could detect environmental damage and sensors hooked up to the body could send back health information to doctors.

In the future, everything could be smart. Smart Home. Smart Industry. Smart Farm. And of course...Smart Planet. But one thing stopping all this communication is the fact that the devices can't talk to each other - they all operate on different communication protocols.

For the idea of a smart city to work, millions of sensors would have to talk to each other with the help of satellites, cell phones and computers.

via Kurzweilai and ScienceDaily

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