Almost daily, we are seeing real-time data and all of its associated technologies being used in creative ways that benefit society. You’ve probably seen stories of smart cities sprouting up all over the world, as communities seek to live more efficiently, and the Internet of Things has been touted as a key new asset in the fight against climate change.
In an effort to make its streets safer, police in Indianapolis have integrated their crime databases, automated real-time crime feeds and built visualization dashboards that can automatically connect the dots in ways you’ve seen in the movies and on television shows for years. But instead of the gritty street-wise cop piecing the details together, it will be the analytics engine and the data feeds doing the crime fighting. In the Indianapolis use case, since the data is shared across police departments, many communities are sharing the benefits, which are numerous and potentially game-changing for the future of local law enforcement. In addition to finding data patterns to solve already committed crimes, this kind of system can then be used to predict and prevent future criminal activities, by studying the bread crumb trails left by known criminals and their associates. It’s Minority Report come to life, only without Tom Cruise.
This is similar to a project that Solace worked on several years ago with the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO), an office within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Their project called “Secure the Cities” used radiation sensors in urban areas to track, identify and coordinate a response to potential terror activity before it happened.
So maybe pre-crime as it was portrayed in Minority Report won’t be happening any time soon but there is pretty clearly a significant role for real-time technology in the pursuit of public safety.