Google Map of Potholes & Street-light

posted by Ravi Arora June 13, 2018

With the onset of monsoon and the increasing temperatures for the 2019 election, Google maps of potholes might be a good gift for Indian citizens. The idea could be extended to include illumination on the city and town streets and noise levels in the public and residential areas. Can’t this be made a part of the Smart City plan and why can’t it be made part of the Prime Minister’s 48 month performance dashboard? It is not difficult to achieve and imagine how useful will it be?

We just need a few sensors and an artificial intelligence engine to achieve this. Sensors available in our mobile phones could be used or special sensors could be installed in a few vehicles that regularly cover the length and breadth of the cities eg: garbage collecting vehicles or the vehicles used for home delivery. The information would bring a lot of transparency and make people accountable. It could be used to improve the contract management process and the governance process. Information about the condition of the road could be used by the citizens to decide the route that one would like to take, especially during situations when one would need a smooth ride though it may take a longer time. This would be very useful to provide warnings to drivers in case of a large pot hole in an otherwise a good road on a highway, which could be unsafe.

Darkness on the roads during the night is cause of accidents and also makes pedestrians insecure. It would be a great service for citizens to know the illumination levels on the road if they need to walk some distance. The sensors on mobile phones could be used for this purpose too but may not be able to provide the accurate and reliable data. Sensors installed on the roof of vehicles could be an alternate method for this. Can satellite images help? I welcome your thoughts and suggestions.