PRESS RELEASE: Internet of Things Network Deployed in Charlottesville

Smart Cville and the LinkLab at UVA have helped launch a network to inspire smart city innovation

Smart Cville and the LinkLab at UVA are announcing the launch of a free, grassroots Internet of Things (IoT) network in Charlottesville.  The two organizations have purchased and deployed technology from the Things Network to provide a set of open tools and a global network to build internet of things applications.  In order to raise awareness for the network and inspire innovation, Smart Cville is hosting an IoT-focused Civic Innovation Day on June 1. The 2019 Civic Innovation Day will ask participants to come with, or form at the event, teams to develop IoT solutions related to environmental sustainability, multimodal transportation, and other IoT focused community projects.

“Anyone can start building on today on this network.  It’s a network that others can contribute to by purchasing and hosting their own gateways.  This is not something Smart Cville or the Link Lab owns or manages. Its truly a grassroots community resource.  I expect to see some astounding applications built,” said Lucas Ames Founder of Smart Cville.

The Things Network is a grassroots organization that first developed a free internet of things network for innovators, businesses, and citizens to use in Amsterdam.  The network is powered by “gateways” hosted by businesses, organizations, and citizens. There are currently almost 7,000 Things Network gateways across the world, serving millions of people.  The network is free to build applications on and therefore fosters smart city innovation from a diverse set of entrepreneurs, makers, citizens, and researchers.

“We are thrilled to be working with Smart Cville on creating a community wireless network. Smart cities is one of three research themes in the Link Lab and we understand how critical it is to have strong partnerships with community stakeholders in order to be leaders in this area of research. By working directly with community organizations in Charlottesville, we hope to engage all community members in our research, especially K-12 students to encourage them to pursue a career in STEM fields,” noted Jonathan Goodall, Associate Director of the Link Lab.

Charlottesville currently hosts five to ten active gateways, covering most of the City.  Not only do places like Smart Cville and UVA have gateways running, but also community-based organizations like Computers4Kids and Charlottesville High School.

“We are excited to be partnering with Smart Cville and the LinkLab at UVA,” says Chris Florez, Program Director of C4K. “Hosting a gateway to The Things Network at C4K helps supports data sharing and research within our community. Ensuring our local 6th thru 12th-grade youth understand the value of data and research is critical in helping them be informed citizens. Plus, it provides them inspiration for future STEM occupations. We’re honored to be part of this meaningful, grassroots initiative.”

For more information or questions, please contact Lucas Ames, Smart Cville, lucas@smartcville.com, 434-414-1085.

Smart Cville is a 501(c)(3)-designated, non-profit organization.  It promotes the use of technology and data to help communities find innovative solutions by facilitating the exchange of ideas between civic institutions and citizens.  Learn more at https://www.smartcville.com.  The Link Lab is an interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems Research at the University of Virginia.  You can find them at https://engineering.virginia.edu/link-lab-0.  C4K (Computers4Kids) equips Charlottesville and Albemarle County youth (6th – 12th grade) from low-income households with 21st-century STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) skills to be competitive in college and careers.  For more information go to https://computers4kids.net/.

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