Industry, Government Push Internet of Things to Improve Transportation in Cities

Public-private partnerships that introduce Internet of Things technology such as autonomous vehicles can improve transportation in U.S. cities, according to witnesses at a Senate hearing Tuesday.

“Cars will become known as data centers on wheels,” Doug Davis, senior vice president and general manager at Intel Corp. said at a hearing of the Senate Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Transportation.

Davis, one of five experts discussing the use of self-driving vehicles to help make cities more efficient, said his company is making investments in autonomous vehicles, which he said can help cities solve infrastructure problems such as traffic and harmful emissions.

Seleta Reynolds, general manager at the Los Angeles Department of Transportation, said some of the biggest challenges to incorporating the Internet of Things in cities is getting tech talent on municipal government payrolls.

“We don’t have the skill sets inside government,” Reynolds said.

Sen. Cory Booker, ranking member of the subcommittee and former mayor of Newark, N.J., said procurement is one of the biggest problems cities have. He emphasized the need for the the federal government to work better with private companies on tech issues.

“I get very annoyed when I watch other countries who are beginning to out-innovate us,” Booker said.

Briefings

Washington Brief: Montana GOP Candidate in Today’s Special Election Charged With Assaulting Journalist

Greg Gianforte, the GOP candidate in a special House election in Montana, was charged with a misdemeanor for allegedly assaulting a journalist who was asking him about the recent Congressional Budget Office estimate of the American Health Care Act. Gianforte faces Democrat Rob Quist in today’s election to fill the seat left vacant by Ryan Zinke, who now serves as head of the Interior Department.

Tech Brief: FCC Faces Scrutiny for Reporter ‘Manhandling’ Incident

After the National Press Club issued a release reporting that a journalist had been “manhandled” by security guards at a Federal Communications Commission press conference, Sens. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) wrote a letter asking FCC Chairman Ajit Pai for details surrounding the incident and assurances it won’t happen again. They requested a response by May 26.

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