AmberMac Blog

Smart Spaces (AmberMac 2019 Tech Trends 1/5)

Welcome to 2019 (and thank you for all your support in 2018). To kick off a new year, I’m sharing a mini-series of posts covering my top 5 tech trends – these trends will affect the way we work, live, and play. Our first post is about moving beyond the smart house to smart spaces in general.

There is a lot of talk about the connected home, but some of the most interesting innovations are taking place beyond the smart house. Consider smart cities, smart offices, smart hospitals, and other smart spaces. This year, we interviewed Toronto Mayor John Tory on The AI Effect where he spoke at length about city-wide technologies in the GTA such as ShotSpotter.

This system includes acoustic sensors that are placed in urban areas. “When a gun is fired, the sensors detect shots fired. Audio triangulation pinpoints gunfire location and machine-learning algorithms analyze the sound. If the sound and visual audio signature match gunfire, it is passed along to the Incident Review Center (IRC).” Today, we have more data about how such a system works. As ShotSpotter notes, 80% of gunshot incidents are never reported to 911. With this system, law enforcement are notified within 60 seconds.

Dozens of cities, including Toronto, are relying more and more on this new tech. Sacramento, California, is just one example of its success, a city where “ShotSpotter has detected 1,905 gunfire incidents, resulting in 142 arrests, 132 guns taken off the street, and also resulted in 3,600 positive interactions in the community according to Sacramento Police Department statistics.” As we move swiftly into 2019, we will see more examples out in the wild of smart spaces – both big and small.