Implementing effective solutions for the betterment of our black communities requires we look at success patterns and practices worldwide and swaggerjack them. In this article, we are going to look at Beijing, China as one of the best and practical “smart city” solutions that involves practical and existing low-technology to implement a smart city solution. And what we going to do is explain how we can also quickly get this solution up and running in the black community.
Public Asset Identification in Beijing
BEIJING — From dustbins to street signs to bus stations, public facilities across Beijing will soon have their own QR codes, meaning the public can access the “identity information” or interact with the city management.
Currently, 50 streets including Beijing’s central thoroughfare of Chang’an Avenue have major public facilities with QR codes. When scanned, the code opens an information page on the smart device, which includes contact details for whoever is responsible for maintenance or repair.
People can also use the social-networking app WeChat to report any issues to the management or search for the nearest toilet or metro stations.
Chen Long, deputy director of the division for urban sceneries management at the Beijing Municipal Commission of City Administration and Environment, said the method will work similar to identification number issued to every citizen.
Smart Central Planning Versus Smarter Participatory Communities
I see a lot of “smart city” blathering going on at Ted Talks with IBM and Alphabet Sidewalk and other firms and they are talking about stuff like IoT and automation of city services and this is a giveaway IBM and Google parent companies made a strategic mistake of hiring and leveraging the opinions of white privilege suburbanites instead of actual urban talent that has a deeper immersive understanding of urban communities to create urban solutions. And as someone pointed out, when you hire only white privileged males and put them to together trying to create inner city urban solutions, they start thinking on the lines of white superiority and white privilege and focus on “central planning” and planned economy solutions for urban locales instead of actual solutions that empower and uplift.
Meanwhile, people like Li Tie in China figured out how to implement smart cities because they obviously are immersed in high-density cities to understand the problem and appreciate the solution goal. And that goal is putting people first.
Here in America, our smart city goal is to have taxpayer-funded resources and public assets under collaborative management with city hall. The hood become smarter and more efficient by the effort of the community operating in a participatory ecosystem. Meanwhile, IBM and Alphabet Sidewalks hires white males who knows nothing about the hood to talk up self-driving cars and video information kiosks and subtly talk up stupid bigoted crap as smart city solutions.
I mean, look at all the black people in the Sidewalk Labs graphic above – like we black folks don’t exist in the big city. Really think about how bigoted these tech firms are and look at the video again of that Sidewalk lab above – they in the video portraying images of white people on city corners and self-driving cars to replace Pakistani and Ghana and Mexican immigrants driving taxi cabs – that’s hipster racist white privilege groupthink being expressed you seeing in that video.
So if we African-Americans want to look at who has the real solutions that we can apply to our black urban communities, I’m just going to put it out there – after you look at what’s being done in China, you brothas and sistas need to say screw Silicon Valley and these other bigoted urban tech firms that don’t even acknowledge, hire or recruit urban black people but want to do “smart city” stuff and let’s just look at what’s being done in China. If anything, we hire cats from China to help our black communities, don’t even bother with a Sidewalk Lab or anybody else who think blacks and other minorities don’t exist in big cities and their future vision of a smart city is white people and robots.
We can apply the pattern and practices from China to make our hood just as smart and using the blockchain makes this a gamechanger. The blockchain will create a distributed ledger that the entire black community can download and see what is being reported on their community such as pot holes, a dead dog rotting in the alley that need to be picked up, cats loitering around the liquor store harassing school kids, cats throwing their fried chicken wings bones on the ground next to the takeout wing joint because there is no public trash dumpster nearby or a street light is out on a city intersection. And the best part is the city do not need to buy-in or give us permission first – the blockchain will force them to buy into the system because it is decentralized by the urban residents.
Let’s talk about how we can implement the “smarty city” solution that was implemented in Beijing and here is the thing – it is actually pretty low-cost (about $226) to implement to turn an entire black urban community into a smart connected community using just QR codes and the blockchain. Let’s break down what Chen Long stated is being done in Beijing:
Every Asset Given an Identity. We can create a crowdsourcing project having the community list every asset we have in our black community from street lights to garbage bins to bus stops to statues in parks to trees and streets and we can assign an unique address to it. Or hire temp workers after doing a crowdfunded project to help pay them, urban hipsters around the world would chip in on the hustle. Or we can ask the city to do it but that’s red tape and a lot of time playing around with them and they may not know all of their city assets. From our experience, we seen cities “acquire” the curated public asset database paying millions to the person that created the smart city solution to allow the city take over management or sign a “city contract” with that person for millions after they demonstrated a proof of concept in a smaller community. You can create a GUID for each public asset and that is the address id of the public asset that will be referenced.
Create Outdoor Quality QR Codes. Here is the challenge – you cannot put the QR code directly on city property as it will be considered vandalism or defacing and it is not official – any clown can copycat the hustle and put their qr code on the city property too. So either you can get a “block-level” qr code that can be hosted at local businesses on that block or you work with the city to get permission to place the QR codes and both can work out well. You can start with the local businesses who want community involvement to better the community and then you can work with city officials who already see the local community and the local businesses support you and will sign on your smart hood initiative with more confidence. Keep in mind the label has to be able to be vandal-proof and hold up to rough weather. These can go on light posts, bus stops, traffic lights and even on the ground to scan an entire block to report the block is hot.
Create a Web Site that Report the Issue. The QR code redirects to a web site that reads the QR code data and display the asset for the person to report an issue. The person should be a registered user so the city can know who to take the report from. In some cases, a patrolling cop can see a broken street light and report the issue by scanning the QR code, doing their damn job for the community. Now, if the city is not involved in the hustle, the web site can create the complaint form and send a template to the city or fill out the city complaint web site automatically or robo-call the helpline with text-to-speech to go pick up the rotting dead dog in the street in front of the elementary school in the hood. What the web site will do is capture the complaint and write it to the blockchain and notify all the parties involved.
Create a Distributed Ledger Blockchain. The blockchain will write the asset and the complaint and the checksum that can be distributed to anybody in the community to review. This allow the black community see that 50 people complained about a street light not working so if a crime happen there, the news journalist can report 50 people complained on the blockchain and nothing was done and the lawyer suing the city can say that 50 people complained on the blockchain and the city knew and did nothing about it. But the city can also review the blockchain ledger and see if there are patterns such as a bad grid that need to be improve and this will make the city more efficient by knowing quickly what the issues are and looking good by addressing the issues in a prompt manner. The local politician can also view the blockchain and call downtown and remind them 50 people are complaining about a street light not working, involving everybody in keeping the hood infrastructure running tight.
So let’s recap what will be done in the diagram below to create a “smart hood” system in the black community.
An urban citizen see a public asset like a pothole in the middle of the street is tearing up cars. The urban citizen scan the QR code label on the street corner that says Cicero and Madison in Chicago and the web site will have a form stating report a problem and the options are street are dirty or a report a pothole. The urban citizen chooses report a pothole and submit the complaint. The web site write to the blockchain, send an email to the city official and the city official respond and fix the pothole and can use the web site to report on the blockchain that the city resolved the issue. The community can have an official record of the complaint and resolution on a distributed ledger.
Benefits of Implementing a Smart Hood
The benefit of creating a QR code blockchain smart hood is openness, transparency and collective participation in making the black community better. The people who live in the black community become stakeholders in making sure their community infrastructure is addressed and can quickly report issues as they arise in our hood. The blockchain is a distributed public ledger that everybody can view to see if a problem was reported and how long it took the city to solve it.
This blockchain can also hold the politician accountable so if a politician like Alderman Jason Ervin want to be re-elected, we all can pull up the blockchain to see how he played a role in keeping our community up and running to also see if he personally accessed the blockchain and put pressure on city officials. Now if Alderman Jason Ervin did respond quickly to the blockchain, he is a winner and the record is public and he get credited. If the city official also responded quickly and saw a pattern and solved a core issue saving taxpayer money, that city official deserves recognition. If a cop patrolling the hood report a lot of issues in our black community like illegal trash dumping, that cop get respect from the black community for caring about the black community as it is an undisputable record on the blockchain and Black Lives Matter can’t find a cop to hate just because. The blockchain will show who gives a damn about the black community real quick.
By the Way, Kossier + Fooky.com Already Had this Solution Ready to Roll.
The cool part, Kossier + Fooky.com already built the “smart hood” infrastructure to easily implement exactly what is done in China to make a “smart hood” and we already blogged about this in detail when I first announced Fooky.com on this blog. http://dreamandhustle.com/2016/06/the-sista-guide-to-creating-smart-city-and-sharing-economy-solutions-using-fooky-com/
If you actually read the article a while ago on Fooky.com instead of skimmed through it, you would have realized our Kossier + Fooky.com already have the asset identity part already setup to tag each public asset, we have the location blocks to identify where the asset is located and we also have the blockchain to record the history of the asset and allow the city officials view the blockchain themselves. So we are already there to give an urban entrepreneur the tools to make a “smart hood” happen and get it up and running as soon as we officially release.
So let’s summarized with the takeaway (1) if we want to create solutions for the black community, we align ourselves with Asian partners and talent to adopt patterns and practices that resemble our way of life in high-density urban communities and (2) the Afro-Tech is the official solution provider for the upliftment and betterment of the black community and no one on the corners got swagger like us.