Recently I joined the PolyU Entrepreneurship Parade 2018, where 40 startups supported by the funding programmes of PolyU showcased their projects and successful startup entrepreneurs shared their experience and insights of their startup journeys. The event provided a valuable platform for over 200 startup entrepreneurs and industry professionals to get connected with each other. In the event you could feel the vibrant startup scene in Hong Kong!
In the touring of exhibitions, there was a variety of innovative startup projects and initiatives, in fields as diverse as mobile app management, educational simulation games, martial arts, hearing aid, cultural preservation, green energy generation, etc. A majority of the initiatives utilised state-of-the-art innovation technologies like AI (Artificial Intelligence), robotics, AR (Augmented Reality) and so on. I was excited to see creativity and innovation being adopted in many new disciplines.
There are many local startup incubators such as Science Park and Cyberport. PolyU is one of the largest university-based startup incubators in Hong Kong. It is encouraging to know that since its launch in 2011, it has supported more than 230 startups and 680 entrepreneurs. Hopefully in the future more domain-specific like FinTech incubators can be set up to support more local startups to push forward a smart city.
巡禮展示了多個不同類型的創新項目，應用領域十分多元化，如手機程式管理、教學遊戲、武術、聽力支援、文化保育、綠色能源等等，大部分項目採用了創新科研技術，如人工智能（Artificial Intelligence）、機械人（Robotics）、擴增實境（Augmented Reality）等等。看到創新技術在越來越多新領域得到使用，真是振奮人心。
Recently a heavy rainstorm broke out in Western Japan, bringing serious landslides and flooding, resulting in one of the worst climate disasters in decades. While it is vital to carry out remedial measures, preventive ones are just as critical. This caused me to reflect on a city’s resilience to climate change and how a city can be smartened up against sudden climate catastrophes.
A smart city can be the key to boosting up a city’s resilience against natural hazards. A smart city is one that adopts information and communication technology (ICT) for a better management of urban resources to achieve a higher quality of life and work efficiency. If a city is smart enough, it should be resilient to sudden climate disasters and emergencies. For example, Internet of Things (IoTs) sensors and big data analysis can be adopted to establish monitoring and alarm systems against many types of climate hazards, like earthquakes, flooding, storms, etc. Such an alarm system can be adopted in the form of a mobile app, to be easily and widely accessible to the public. Emergency navigation can be provided on the same system to guide people to safe places as well.
While it is important to build a city’s climate resilience, it is essential to make the city eco-friendly to cut down carbon emissions to fight against climate change in the first place. Copenhagen for instance, set a role model in transiting to a zero carbon economy by implementing a climate plan to achieve carbon neutrality by 2025. This shows that a smart city does not simply folster climate resilience but can even combat climate change!
Hopefully in the future technologies and innovations can be adopted to solve many more urban problems and make life happier.
智慧城市以資訊及通訊科技（Information and Communications Technology）來管理城市和城市資源，以提高生活質素和工作效率。建立智慧城市同時有助增強城市抵禦氣候變化的能力。一個有足夠「智慧」的智慧城市足以抵抗突發的氣候災禍和緊急狀況，例如，利用物聯網（Internet of Things）感測器和大數據（Big Data）分析技術針對各類氣候災害如地震、水浸、風災等建立監察和警報系統，以手機程式的形式供大眾使用。系統亦可包括緊急路線導航的功能來引導民眾疏散至安全地方。