Dubai’s big bet on the “smart” city

Smart cities are growing at breakneck speed…. As one expert at the Dubai exhibition “Information Technology in the Gulf” described, cities are becoming the body of an artificially intelligent mind.

To hacer an intelligent city that sea really intelligent no sólo intelligent ‘”a secas”, necesitas an analítica del tráfico vial, a medical analítica de las personas, to control an intelligent red electricity, in reality, a model of todo lo that ocurre in the city. You have to integrate all these systems into one, so the city almost becomes the body of an AI (Artificial Intelligence)

We are now witnessing the intelligent construction of city-specific subsystems. And I think in the years to come, we’ll see these subsystems connected to each other until we have an integrated mind for the whole city, says Ben Goertzel, founder and CEO of Singularitynet.

**Dubai Now, all in one mobile app

In Duabai, there is a platform where you can search almost anything.

“The aim of ‘Dubai Now’ is to bring all government services under one umbrella. Right now in Dubai we have 88 services in one app,” said Wesam Lootah, CEO of Smart Dubai.

“If you want to drive a car in Dubai, you must first obtain a driver’s license. The courses are provided by the private sector, but the license is issued by the government. To buy a car, you go to the private dealer , but you need a government entity” to register it. To fund it, you go to the bank, and to insure it to the insurance industry. All of this can now be done from a single ‘Dubai Now’ platform,” says Aisha Bin Bishr, Director of Smart Dubai.

“What we are doing now is broadening our vision and also including the private sector and the digitization of services,” adds Wesam.

“Contracts for the sale and purchase of properties can be signed. The real estate business is at the high end of this platform and all digital companies are already officially recognized by the competent authorities”, adds Aïcha.

What users say about Dubai Now

The app recently reached 1 million downloads. We asked some of its users about their experience in this regard:

“It’s great to have all these apps in one place, where you can see everything, whether it’s…legislative laws, immigration regulations, your electricity bill, the payment of fines, the nearest car park… It’s very easy to use, from home… from the office, explains Patrick Daniel, user of Dubai Now and founder of Blue Camel.

“I use it to pay all my bills and to pay the bills. It saves me from receiving email notifications or accumulating paper for nothing. From there, I can pay all the bills for the month, in about 30 seconds, says Sarah James, a user from Dubai Now”

Who controls and protects data storage

“We have established a central base for the control and management of this data, so that we can foster its effectiveness while preserving the appearance and ethical principles surrounding its use. Maintaining the privacy and security of residents of our city is a priority”, explains Aïcha

While apps like this could soon mean the end of bureaucracy and a saving of paper…the cornerstone of any smart city remains the efficient regulation of its energy supply…and that means smart grids.

“When you build infrastructure in the network, you have to build it around the peak of your demand. And that peak can be a factor of five times the base load or some of the other load levels for the rest of the day. So if we build infrastructure that’s five times more complex and heavy than what’s needed for most of the day, more trash will accumulate,” says Dakota Selmer, founder of Thor Trucks.

Smart basic services

Smart grids are a key part of the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority’s strategy to make the emirate the “smartest city in the world”.

For this, 1,700 million euros are invested. The authorities have reduced losses in the electricity transmission and distribution networks to only 3.3%. Thousands of customers have already installed solar panels on their homes with a total capacity of around 106 MW. These are connected to the electricity network and if they produce surpluses, they are automatically deducted from the total price of the bills.

“The technology will be incredible, but its deployment must be protected by a decentralized control system, because the safeguard that involves a small elite who protects all the others, also carries with it well-known flaws, concludes Ben Goertzel, founder and CEO of singularitynet

As these technologies become more and more connected, our cities are gearing up to be truly ‘smart’… But how we protect this necessary private data must be just as smart.

Leave a Comment