The future of commuting at IoTUK hack event

By Amy, Eastpoint Software on 08 October 2018

Using IoT to impact transport, smart cities and health was the subject of an exciting two-day hack in Cambridge. 

Teams competed to put forward winning ideas in four categories - fall prevention for the elderly, a smart bench for Cambridge Science Park, the collection of movement data in the city, and boosting the use of sustainable transport. 

Eastpoint won the sustainable transport challenge category with our take on sustainable commuter travel called The Greener Mile.  

The event was part of the IoTUK programme, in conjunction with the government’s Digital Catapult and Future Cities Catapult. 

It was carried out by the excellent Cambridge Hack. As well as designing and organising the hack, the team gave advice on presentations and hints to achieve the most you can in the time given. If you have the opportunity to attend a Cambridge Hack event, we highly recommended it.

They also provide cool games/pick me ups throughout the two days to keep everyone motivated. 

Our concept, The Greener Mile, was for a private bike and scooter reservation scheme at strategic hubs around Cambridge, enabling commuters to finish their journey in a hassle-free, sustainable way. The hubs already exist, so minimal infrastructure is needed, and it is an evolution of an established approach. 

We also did a couple of other pitches. One was also for the sustainable transport challenge – a traffic app that uses buses to trial optimal speeds against green lights (inspired by the GLOSA project). Buses are able to navigate traffic more effectively, making them more reliable, and improving traffic in general by using the bus behaviour as a ‘pacemaker’ for other traffic. 

Our third pitch was for the movement measurement challenge, centered on the need for data. Our pitch was for a fob, given to all citizens, that provides anonymised movement mapping data (with an opt-in profile feature if you wish to be rewarded for sustainable travel).

For the smart bench, there were lots of ideas about how to make the bench a tech hub to support health, both in terms of exercise and health monitoring.  

In the challenge for proactive health care and fall prevention for the elderly, one idea that caught the imagination was a toilet with a device to check urine, providing data on whether a person is dehydrated (a cause of falls).