Nantes Digital Week – Smart cities with Sopra Steria

I was invited yesterday by Sopra Steria Group to the “Live your smart city” [“Vis ta ville intelligente”] event in Nantes – one of the largest cities in the Western region. This event was part of the Nantes Digital Week.

It was a very well driven event and it was very interesting to see how Nantes is promoting digital initiatives locally.

I was very excited to discover Sopra Steria’s solutions on following smart city projects:

  • Remote assistance in healthcare
  • Monitoring of professional risks and difficulties
  • Energetic performance management of buildings
  • Supervision and maintenance of public trees around the city
  • Harbor management with mobile devices
  • Promotion of city events (museum, concerts, theatre …) with crowdsourcing of opinions
  • Social network for neighborhoods

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Later in the afternoon, I had the pleasure to participate as a speaker to a discussion about “Data Governance and APIs“. I had two brillant co-speakers who were the CDO of Rennes and the Big Data IT Director at Credit Agricole. The audience was good and made of many companies and administrations in the region.

I explained the value of an API Management solution when implementing an Open Data project. This can be summarized as follows:

  • Security
    • Protect against data tampering. In open data projects, there is no major risk for data stealing since the data are free, but this is important to make sure that these data are not altered by malicious attacks.
    • Protect against Denial of Service attacks
  • Performance
    • Accelerate traffic through caching for a better performance
  • Governance through an API Portal
    • Expose the API catalog and control access rights according to channels
    • Quota management to prevent crawlers to pump all the data leading to uncontrolled indexing and usage
  • Connected objects
    • Open data projects not flowing only one way, they can get information back from consuming devices to enrich information and get a better understanding of the usage of this data and the behavior of consumers. This way, the city can better define its territory planning leading to substantial savings and a better match with citizen expectations. An API Management solution serves in this case as a unique Gateway to secure the inbound and outbound traffic.
  • Analytics
    • An Open Data project brings even more value if the city can get actionable metrics out of flowing data. What are the most used APIs? What is the daily profile of API consumption ? In which parts of the city ? Can I correlate these consumption data with other data I have available in my other systems ? Through proper correlation, cities might identify interesting patterns that would help them better manage the city.
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Sopra Steria / Axway team (me on the right)

At the end of the day, we had the pleasure to meet the local elect of the city and I was pleased to hear about the innovating local projects they are currently engaging and developing to shape the future of the city.

The evening was very informal and interactive around an excellent cocktail, we could even get a demo of the Crystal Ball of Naonext, a local startup who have a real expertise in digital art technology and are getting really successful with their product across the globe.

Thanks again to the Sopra Steria team for organizing this event, this was a wonderful day.

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