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Why Smart Cities Need Cloud Services

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kq4ym
kq4ym  
3/25/2014 1:43:58 PM
User Rank Urban Legend
Re: Future State
The government consortiums and private industry alliances seem to be a logical way to get sensors installed and the date into the cloud. But, I wonder if there's some rule of thumb on what size city or agency could profitably use these services? Or will it come to a future point where specialized cloud service will be able to offer inexpensive programs to say the water, waste or electric utility services of communities?

bulk
bulk  
3/2/2014 2:28:33 AM
User Rank Urban Legend
Re: public data in cloud
@mejiac, 

Its too bad but it really seems that we are always playing catchup with security. 

mejiac
mejiac  
2/28/2014 8:32:15 PM
User Rank Village Voice
Re: public data in cloud
@bulk,

This is very true, and is one of the reasons there are so many companies developing and implementing security protocals... but from where I sit, I think there are always a step behind.

Some of my credit and debit cards have been replaced because of the Target incident.

mejiac
mejiac  
2/28/2014 8:30:47 PM
User Rank Village Voice
Future State
Excellent Article Mary!

This is a topic that is on everyone's radar (at least in the IT industry)

"most city networks aren't equipped to work with real-time input from sensors"

From this statement, I ask myself what's the future state of where we want to be? Is being able to obtain and crunch data in real time the main goal? If so, than what steps need to occur to get there?

I think companies like Cisco, IBM, Oracle and other industry leaders are paving the way, but I guess we're still not sure what the end result will look like until we're actually there.

One of the concepts of the Agile development approach is to define what is "Done".... so my question is, what can we consider "done" in this context?

bulk
bulk  
2/28/2014 11:57:55 AM
User Rank Urban Legend
Re: public data in cloud
@PeterJ I think that no mater what, information will always be vulnrable to theft. As much as we secure it someone will always find a way to access it. That is the reality of IT security. 

Mary Jander
Mary Jander  
2/27/2014 12:34:32 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: How Secure are these Clouds
Good point, @PeterJ. Still, if there are more savings to be realized by switching to cloud services than investing in a datacenter infrastructure that continues to require upgrades and consume operating fees, then a good case can be made to switch.

I wonder whether many cities just don't do the math out of kneejerk assumptions.

PeterJ
PeterJ  
2/27/2014 9:50:20 AM
User Rank Urban Legend
Re: public data in cloud
Yes, one thing that can happen, though, is that there is connection to private information on the other side of these activities or through payment transaction. We had an issue, for example, with auto registration renewals where credit card information was hacked.

PeterJ
PeterJ  
2/27/2014 9:46:45 AM
User Rank Urban Legend
Re: How Secure are these Clouds
Yes, Mary. Those are important points. One thing I was going to mention earlier, too, is the the fact that many entities (including the public one that I work in) made large investments in operations centers and capital equipment to run in them. I think there is a relectance to walk away from that in spite of the evolution to these services. Maybe this happens more quickly in the private sector, but its sometimes more complicated on the public side.

PostSandy
PostSandy  
2/26/2014 11:46:58 PM
User Rank Village Voice
public data in cloud
Many of us have asked about security. Rightfully so. It leads me to think the kind of data to be stored and requested via city cloud will be those that aren't sensitive personal data. Not saying sensitive data can't be stored, but I'd like to first think about the less sensitive ones. For example, how filled up public garbage bin #12345 at the intersection of street x and street y is; how many people are in public space X; how many bikes are parked at dock #09876; what the current wait time at the DMV for license renewal is, etc. Depends on how open the data is, a lot of innovations can come out of it. 

Mary Jander
Mary Jander  
2/26/2014 3:37:32 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: How Secure are these Clouds
Agree there are many variables in determining just how secure a cloud actually is for a particular city and what savings there may be.

One thing: There may be some variation in security and payback across applications. Police apps may be relatively insecure in some environments, while email isn't. Moving email to the cloud may produce more savings than moving HR there. I think we can generalize that clouds save costs, though, and that there hasn't been proven to be any more security from internal networks than clouds.

Naturally, big cloud providers have sponsored reports about these topics, all Googleable. I have no reason not to believe most of these results, particularly if they involve surveys.

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