A Survey of Enabling Technologies for Smart Communities
2. Smart Cities—How It All Started
- First, the Smart Cities will be massively instrumented by the ubiquitous and pervasive deployment of intelligent platforms equipped with smart modules that can sense and interact with the environment, store, send and receive massive quantities of data, and that can interact with other networked infrastructure elements in the Smart City. The intelligent platform is apt to provide real-time data that will be shared with all interested parties (including the citizens) and on which timely management decisions can be based;
- Second, the Smart Cities will make extensive use of strategies and techniques to incentivize and engage its connected and well-informed citizens. These strategies and techniques will influence both short- and long-term behavior;
- Third, the Smart Cities will continually innovate and enhance their service offerings to the citizens based on community intelligence. This behavior will lead to the evolution of diverse Smart Cities based on their own characteristics and the needs of their citizens;
- Fourth, the Smart Cities will be human-centric as opposed to present-day cities where the citizens’ needs are secondary to other considerations. As a well-known example, pedestrians have long been treated as second-class citizens in the design of urban traffic infrastructure. Existing designs for transportation networks were centered entirely around the needs of vehicles, with little or no regard to accommodating pedestrians. The challenge, as we see it, lies in integrating pedestrians into the transportation network design. Lack of timely support for pedestrians to cross the streets encourages many pedestrians to jaywalk, a well-documented source of accidents [21,22]. It is, therefore, of fundamental importance to provide pedestrian-centric services, particularly for vulnerable pedestrians such as the kids, the elderly, and the disabled. To realize this vision, it is critical to devise and implement in Smart Cities collaboration strategies that will provide pedestrians with the safety they need at intersections.
3. Smart Communities
4. Cloud Computing and Utility Computing
- First, it gives users the illusion of having at their disposal infinite computing resources available on demand, thus eliminating the need for them to plan far ahead for resource provisioning;
- Second, it eliminates the up-front financial commitment by cloud users, allowing companies to start small and to increase hardware resources only when there is an increase in their needs because of their applications increasing in popularity;
- Third, it gives users the ability to pay for computing resources on a short-term basis (e.g., processors by the hour and storage by the day) and release them when they are no longer needed, thereby rewarding conservation .
5. Vehicular Clouds
- Enhance urban mobility by exploring methods and management strategies that increase system efficiency and improve individual mobility through information sharing: VCs should combine detailed knowledge of real-time traffic flow data with stochastic predictions within a given time horizon to help (1) the formation of urban platoons containing vehicles with a similar destination and trajectory; (2) adjust traffic signal timing in order to reduce unnecessary platoon idling at traffic light; and (3) present the driving public with high-quality information that will allow them to reduce their trip time and its variability, eliminate the conditions that lead to congestion or reduce its effect.
- Avoid congestion of key transportation corridors through cooperative navigation systems: Congestion-avoidance techniques that become possible in SC environments will be supplemented by route guidance strategies to reduce unnecessary idling and will limit environmental impact of urban transportation.
- Handling non-recurring congestion: VCs will explore strategies to efficiently dissipate congestion, by a combination of traffic light re-timing and route guidance to avoid more traffic buildup in congested areas.
6. Crowdsourcing and Crowd Computing
7. Sensors and Sensor Networks
8. Edge Computing
9. Big Data Analytics
10. The Internet of Things
11. From IoTs to IoPaTs
12. Towards IoT and IoPaT Ecosystems
13. The Marketplace of Services (MoS)
- First, it will keep the price of the services offered competitive;
- Second, it will reward quality services; and,
- Third, it will promote innovation by rewarding new services aligned with the needs of the Smart Community.
14. Possible Services That Can Be Offered in Smart Cities and Smart Communities
14.1. Enhancing the Economic Resilience of Communities in the Face of Natural Disasters
- The vast majority of the microbusinesses do not have monetary reserves that could help them survive the disaster;
- Banks are often reluctant to offer loans;
- The owners of microbusinesses are not aware of federal or state programs set up specifically to help microbusinesses in the case of a disaster. A good example is the federal CARES Act that provides assistance (in the form of micro-loans) to small businesses in order to ensure employee retention. Unfortunately, many micro-businesses in the U.S. did not take advantage of the CARES Act because they were not aware of the various conditions, deadlines, or were not able to do the paperwork correctly and on time.
- Assessing their vulnerability to natural disasters;
- Assessing the risk of natural disasters and improve their readiness to survive natural disasters;
- Devise a multi-level post-disaster recovery plan;
- Identifying federal and state programs that provide financial assistance to struggling microbusinesses;
- Identify local interest groups that can help them with pathways to a successful recovery from natural disasters.
14.2. Revitalizing Struggling Small Communities
- Better managing local resources. This entails optimizing the use of existing resources and identifying potential new resources that can be exploited/aggregated;
- Providing high quality services that the population needs and is ready to pay for, either through taxes or by purchasing them from a service provider;
- Setting up a marketplace of resources and services that provides valuation for the goods and services produced and consumed by the community
- Policies that support and promote the better managing of resources and high quality services aligned with the needs of the local population.
- Improve the quality of life in each of the member communities. One significant component is to fight crime. We expect that, in a small community, the vast majority of crimes are petty crimes ranging from burglary to larceny, etc. To combat this type of crime we can rely, effectively, on drone technology to discourage would-be criminals;
- Enhance the outside image projected by the communities. The idea here is to make the community attractive to folks who would be interested in joining the community. Of a special interest is attracting industrial partners (new IoPaTs). In this regard, inspired policies, including free land, tax rebates and other similar incentives, supported by the local governments are of a fundamental importance;
- Enhancing the technical skills of the workforce. One way of implementing this idea is by using assistance from federal programs;
- Promoting tourism and organizing fairs and open houses showcasing the natural beauty of the region,
15. Concluding Remarks and Challenges Ahead
- One of fundamental attributes of a Smart Community is sustainability. What safeguards, if any, need to be added to guaranteed that the civil society is sustainable?
- What is a minimal set of incentives that triggers the formation of the ecosystem of IoPaTs?
- Can the Marketplace of Services provide those incentives?
- Can the Marketplace of Service guarantee sustainable innovation in a Smart Community? What other actors are at play here?
- In the process described above, some IoPaTs may become more and more successful and powerful while others will become weaker. Can the Marketplace of Services, by itself, prevent this imbalance from having a negative effect on the community?
- What is the role of community-wide administrative policies?
- Can powerful IoPaTs manipulate the marketplace and influence the needs and wants of the community?
- What are the factors that can stifle innovation?
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
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|AEO||Association for Enterprise Opportunity|
|BD||Big Data analytics|
|ICT||Information and Communications Technology|
|IoT||Internet of Things|
|IoPaT||Internet of People and Things|
|ITS||Intelligent Transportation Systems|
|MoS||Marketplace of Services|
|SBA||Small Business Administration|
|TMC||Traffic Management Center|
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Iqbal, A.; Olariu, S. A Survey of Enabling Technologies for Smart Communities. Smart Cities 2021, 4, 54-77. https://doi.org/10.3390/smartcities4010004
Iqbal A, Olariu S. A Survey of Enabling Technologies for Smart Communities. Smart Cities. 2021; 4(1):54-77. https://doi.org/10.3390/smartcities4010004Chicago/Turabian Style
Iqbal, Amna, and Stephan Olariu. 2021. "A Survey of Enabling Technologies for Smart Communities" Smart Cities 4, no. 1: 54-77. https://doi.org/10.3390/smartcities4010004