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Engineering Equality, Diversity & Inclusion

‘Access for all’ as a fundamental requirement

Last night we picked up the ITS (UK) ‘innovation award for Inclusive Mobility’, yet access to transport networks, and to many destinations, the workplace, venues and events, still remains dire. 

Mixed messages are sent to people trying to get from A to B, via a myriad of apps. Information and signage are often in different formats in different regions, there’s close to zero sharing of key customer information between service providers, and so-called ‘accessible routes’ are disrupted or rendered completely inaccessible as we constantly rebuild our towns and cities. In parallel, siloed special assistance services target the disabled community in a bid to tick a box for ‘social responsibility’.

In my view this is the wrong approach.

If you count hidden disabilities and mental conditions, the majority of us are or will be disabled to some degree and some point in our lives. Regardless, and not to belittle the personal circumstances that many people have to contend with day-to-day, we all have ‘specific needs’ when it comes to transit; bike storage, luggage… children! When peoples’ needs are considered and the corresponding information shared, as opposed to generic ‘shortest path’ travel advice, we significantly improve accessibility.

Whilst catering for certain needs is arguably more ‘business critical’ than others, the approach to designing public services needs to change, so that accessibility for everyone is considered a fundamental requirement. It’s not easy to implement of course, but instead of building exclusive services for minority groups, that increase the challenges of interoperability, I believe we can work towards a one-size-fits-all approach to service design. In the UK, Government Digital Services have come a long way in achieving this but extending the approach to physical infrastructure and human interaction is key.  If we do, ‘whole places’, as opposed to a mish-mash of disparate services, will become more accessible. Only then can we lay claim to equality, diversity and inclusion.

Thanks to Atkins, Nick Goss, RSSBDepartment for Transport (DfT), United KingdomLoughborough University and University of Surrey for helping to deliver the #TOCAbility initiative – which is a step in the right direction.

More info: http://tocability.com

Request for Proposals

Cloud-based data architecture for IoT hardware deployment

We are seeking a fully managed cloud-based solution to store and process data for a regional smart city IoT deployment.

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Autonomous, Connected, Electric and Shared (ACES)

WMG ACES dinner hosts transport industry leaders

The Future of Transport will be Autonomous, Connected, Electric and Shared (ACES). There is a global call to radically transform the way we travel – both to reduce emissions and also to ease congestion and increase the ease, safety and speed at which passengers are able to get from point A to B.

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Join us @TheNEC for Ventrefest, 04 July, 2019

Future Mobility: Opportunities for West Midlands Businesses

You. Smart. Thing. CEO Chris Thompson joins representatives from Transport for West Midlands, Conigital, Pashley Cycles and Coventry & Warwickshire LEP for the ‘Future of Mobility’ panel at Venturefest.

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Smart-train Hardware Demonstration

Smart-train Automatic Passenger Counting & Occupancy Management

Smart-train provides accurate real-time Automatic Passenger Counting (APC) and vehicle status information, delivering a range of transformative customer experience, operational and commercial benefits to the rail industry.

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From Smartphones to Smart Cities

Interactive locations and intelligent digital signage (iLIDS)

When: March 27th, 17:00 – 19:00

Where: You. Smart. Thing. 5th Floor, Somerset House, 37 Temple St, Birmingham B2 5DP

Interactive locations and intelligent digital signage (iLIDS), are being used to create ‘smart city’ environments the world over, where the environment itself becomes the user-interface.

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TOC Ability: Designing Intelligent Mobility

Blueprint for improved travel for disabled passengers

TOC Ability is a new digital platform providing a blueprint for removing barriers to travel for disabled passengers. The £1.4 million TOC Ability research and development project has today released its final report, which shows how digital technology can be harnessed to enhance the accessibility and inclusivity of rail services for disabled customers.

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You. Smart. Thing.

We’re delighted to present ‘You. Smart. Thing.’

January 31st, 16:30 – 19:00.

A late afternoon / early evening networking event for friends, clients and collaborators of Enable iD, at our new central Birmingham offices.

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SMEs, IoT & Big Data

Visit the You. Smart. Thing. demonstration suite

As part of our commitment to helping SMEs design new data-driven products and services, supported by the European Regional Development Fund backed Big Data Corridor project, You. Smart. Thing. has invested in a suite of ‘Internet of Things’ hardware.

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Department for Transport Backs Interactive Train Station Technology

Interactive Locations and Intelligent Digital Signage (iLIDS)

The Department for Transport has awarded UK technology company, Enable International, together with The Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB), Arriva UK Trains and research partners the University of Surrey, funding through its £9m Innovate UK ‘Accelerating Innovation in Rail’ programme. The money will be used to research, develop and test new technology to improve information, safety and accessibility on railway station platforms.

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Enabling Intelligent Trains

‘Smart-train’ Passenger Counting & Real-time Information System Successfully Piloted by Chiltern Railways

“It’s been fantastic to be able to engage train staff and passengers in testing a system that reconciles real-time information from individual carriages with timetabled train services.” 

Chris Thompson, Chief Strategy Officer, Enable iD

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