Although every city approaches IoT a differently, for Chicago, smart city projects started with and have always been all about the data.
"The city has more than 600 data sets on its open data portal, which relaunched with a more resident-friendly design earlier this year," said Brenna Berman, who was Chicago's CIO for six years, from May 2011 to May 2017.
At that time, Berman left city government to sign on as executive director of City Digital, an urban innovation program that's part of Chicago-based UI Labs. The organization is a public-private partnership that "uses Chicago as a testbed for new, massive, smart city data-driven infrastructure improvements that enhance residents' quality of life and city efficiency," according to the company.
The Windy City's open data portal lets users find city data as well as facts about the neighborhoods, create maps and graphs about the city and download the data for their own analyses. Many of these data sets are updated at least once a day, with some updated several times a day.
"The city started using all that data to drive more efficient and effective services through predictive analytics probably about five years ago," Berman said. "And it applies predictive analytics to just about anything you can think of, from rodent baiting to restaurant inspections to detecting levels of West Nile virus in the lake and the river to elevator inspections."
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