Siemens scientists are participating in a new research project that analyzes the various ways large amounts of data (big data) can be used commercially.
The goal of the EU's BYTE project is to produce a roadmap that includes specific steps that can be taken to enable Europe to increase its market share in the big data sector until 2020.
BYTE focuses on the development of political and technological measures that would allow the benefits of big data to be exploited to the greatest possible extent, while also minimizing negative effects with regard to aspects such as privacy.
BYTE picks up where the EU's BIG project left off. The latter identified business models and technologies for using big data. Along with Siemens, the project includes ten partners from industry and research.
The intelligent analysis of large amounts of data, and above all the merging of previously separate sets of information, offers huge potential. Industrial companies already use big data technology to identify energy savings potential, for example.
Such analyses become more difficult when several sources are involved - for example, when energy consumption data from all industrial facilities and private households in a particular region needs to be examined. This information can be used to draw conclusions regarding individuals' production or behavior, so its use must be regulated precisely and securely.
The greater the amount of data merged from various sources, the more varied will be the positive and negative impact of the data's use. BYTE brings together natural scientists, engineers, computer programmers, legal experts, sociologists, and economists in a team that uses various case studies to analyze all of these aspects of big data.
Scientists from Siemens' research department Corporate Technology (CT) are examining case studies in smart cities for the BYTE project. Siemens also refers to the associated data as smart data because the information comes from specialized environments such as cities, industrial facilities, and power plants, and the data they generate needs to be processed in a specific way in order to make it relevant.
In smart cities, for example, cell phones provide anonymous data on people's movements, cars generate data on traffic conditions, and smart meters enable predictions to be made regarding future energy requirements. Cities can use such data to reduce traffic or improve their carbon footprint - but without invading the privacy of their citizens while doing so. This will require the further development of the legal framework and various data protection technologies.
The Siemens researchers are working together with European cities on the analysis of big data applications at the interfaces between energy and transport. They are conducting interviews with experts from energy suppliers, municipal authorities, and public transport operators and working out the various aspects. Several Siemens units are working on solutions for smart cities including smart meters, building and energy management systems, and infrastructure for electric mobility. CT has also been managing the Aspern Smart City research project in Vienna since the summer of 2013.
Dr. Norbert Aschenbrenner | Siemens InnovationNews
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