Enabling Future Smart Cities to Flourish


In this Project Syndicate’s article entitled “Life in the Uber City“, MIT’s Senseable City Lab researchers encourage policymakers to direct resources towards supporting “a bottom-up” ecosystem to make smart cities a reality and also to nurture “the regulatory frameworks” which creates the urban space to allow innovations to thrive.

On one hand, I agree with their call to enable a more conducive regulatory environment for smart city innovations like Uber, Nest and Airbnb to flourish, but I also believe that technology multinationals programmes such like Microsoft CityNext and IBM Smarter Planet should not be avoided. These multinationals play a very important role to support the larger local technology economy and provide important institutional knowledge and best practices to make such smart cities innovations truly scale up beyond district level and spread the benefits across the entire city.

Therefore, policymakers should not be forced to go one way over the other but keep an open mind about technology, and focus their effort on developing a regulatory environment which supports all innovation from both sides – start-ups or multinationals, to thrive, and that’s a really smart choice.



Beyond Search – Semantic Computing and Internet Economics: Microsoft Research Request for Proposals

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Microsoft Research is pleased to announce a new worldwide Request for Proposals (RFP):  Beyond Search – Semantic Computing and Internet Economics. For full details, guidelines, and instructions, please visit http://research.microsoft.com/ur/us/fundingopps/RFPs/BeyondSearch_RFP.aspx

This Request for Proposals is done in partnership with Microsoft adCenter in support of its collaboration with the academic research community. The RFP due date is November 1, 2007, 5pm PDT (-8 UTC/GMT)

The total amount available under this request for proposals (RFP) is $1,000,000. Microsoft anticipates making approximately 20 awards averaging $50,000, with a maximum of $100,000 for any single award.

RFP highlights
To advance academic research and publication in the area of Internet Research and, in particular in data mining, information finding, information supply, and internet economics, Microsoft intends to make available to the RFP awardees a Microsoft adCenter Search query log excerpt with 100 million search queries along with ad click logs sampled over a few months, and a Live Search query log excerpt with 15 million search queries with per-query search result click-throughs. In addition, Microsoft adCenter will provide advertiser accounts to all winners.

This RFP has two tracks:
Track 1 – Semantic Computing
Track 2 – Internet Economics
Microsoft encourages proposals for either track which describe innovative research using the adCenter, Live Search, and SDK assets in bold, novel, and unconventional approaches to further Internet Research and related technologies, including interdisciplinary research.

AUS, NZ or Singapore applicants, please CC: myworkemail.png in your application so that I can know who in these region respond to this RFP.