A few of our ICRI Cities members attended the recent Maker Faire UK in Newcastle last month.  Maker Faire UK is a two day family friendly festival of invention and creativity, bringing together over 300 hackers, crafters, coders, DIYers and garden shed inventors from across the globe – people who love to make stuff and who want to share their passion with the public.  Members of our Intel contingent set up a stall to display some of our latest ideas to engage the public with technology and show how sensors in the community work.   According to Duncan Wilson, one of the favourite devices they brought along was an inter-active bubble machine, whereby members of the public could send texts to the device, which would then blow out bubbles in response.

Users text the bubble machine at Maker Faire uK

Users text the bubble machine at Maker Faire uK

You can find out more about Intel’s experience at the Maker Faire UK here.

Duncan Wilson and Greg Jackson discuss air quality sensors in a short video here.  These air quality sensors lie at the heart of some of our on-going projects, as the data they provide will help our researchers to find the best solutions to some of the most prominent urban centric problems in relation to future sustainability.

The Maker Faire Paris is due to run on the weekend of the 21st and 22nd June, and looks set to be another wonderful weekend of show, tell and discovery.


What lessons can we learn from real-world implementations that successfully navigate the interesting tension between top down versus bottom up design of urban technology?

On October 22-23rd, Intel  will explore this and other questions pertaining to the challenges facing future cities as paty of its 2013  European Research and Innovation Conference (ERIC), which will hosted together with the annual Research at Intel Europe (R@IE) showcase in Nice, France, close to the home to Intel’s High Performance Computing and Wireless Labs.

 190 Intel ERIC Banner 2013 P1

The theme of this year’s conference is “Building a Smart, Sustainable and Inclusive society through Research and Innovation partnership” and there will be a number of distinct focus areas included within the event: Networking, Mobility, HPC Exascale, Connected Cities and System on Chip (SoC) Architecture.

For the third year running, David Prendergast, an ICRI Cities Principal Investigator is responsible for organising the Connected Cities and Communities track in the conference. The theme for 2013 is “City Life” and speakers have been asked to provide insights around how we synthesise scalable city platforms with local community needs, practices and aspirations.  What lessons can we learn from the recipes that have worked over time?

Selected partners from the Intel research ecosystem, including Academic and Intel Researchers as well as leading thinkers and practitioners in the area of future cities are invited to speak in order to bring together a potent mixture of perspectives, approaches and challenging discussions. Speakers and delegates have ample opportunities to network with experts across academia, industry & government organizations as well as press and analysts from around the world.

Attendance is by invitation only and whilst places are very limited, ICRI Cities has access to a small number of spaces that it can make available to potential delegates. Readers are welcome to register their interest by contacting david.k.prendergast@intel.com.

Vaiva Kalnikaite and Sarah Gallacher, both from ICRI-Cities at UCL in London will jointly present their work on gathering and representing community data using novel input and visualisation mediums.  The presentation will include details of two in the wild studies that were conducted at two scales within a city environment – 1) in a “dead” workplace building and 2) in a “divided” community.  The first study looks at how lightweight and playful technology interventions can encourage greater levels of social connectedness within a “dead” workplace environment where physical interactions and a sense of community are typically low.  The second study looks at how a technology intervention has been used to challenge the strongly held belief of a social divide in an urban community.

Conference Schedule

Day 1 – Tuesday 22 October

Start Time




Arrival & Registration


Conference Opening Martin Curley (Intel), Gabriel Crean (CEA), Christian Estrosi (MP & Mayor of Nice)


Research@Intel Europe Technology Showcase




Welcome to the Connected Cities Track Martin Curley & David Prendergast


Sustainable Intelligent Systems Charles Sheridan, Intel Labs Europe


Hyperlocal technology and social sustainability: how to empower local communities Mandeep Hothi, Young Foundation


City Intelligence as an enabler for Sustainable Cities Bernd Wachmann & Christian Schwingenschlögl, Siemens


Coffee Break


Welcome back to the track David Prendergast / Keith Ellis


SmartSantander Uncut – From City to Citizen provided Infrastructures Alex Gluhak, Surrey University


Community data gathering & visualisation Sarah Gallacher & Vaiva Kalnikaite, ICRI Cities


ICT for Urban Water Management Philippe Gourbesville, University of Nice


Closing comments David Prendergast / Keith Ellis


Free Time


Drinks Reception


Awards Ceremony Intel University Program Office


Bus Transfers to Nice City Centre and Harbour


Day 2 – Wednesday 23rd October

Start Time




Intel ERIC 2013 Opening & Welcome Martin Curley


Keynote Speaker Steve Pawlowski – Snr Intel Fellow


Plenary introduction Martin Curley


Innovation as a Growth Engine for Europe Peter Droell – Head of Policy Development for Industrial Innovation, EC


Smart Grid – Smart Europe Laurent Schmitt – VP Alstom Grid


Integrated Computing – the Next Wave Philip Moynagh – Intel Director, Low Power Embedded Processors


Speaker 4  TBC TBC


Closing Comments Martin Curley


Coffee Break


Welcome back to the track David Prendergast / Keith Ellis


Intelligent Cities – Hype or the Shape of Things to Come? Jen Hawes-Hewitt, Accenture


Walking the Talk: Sensors & the City Katz Kiely, Loop Labs


Stories from the Grid Laurent Schmitt, Alstom Grid




Welcome back to the track David Prendergast / Keith Ellis


CityWatch: Participatory Sensing for Smart and Sustainable Cities Melanie Bouroche, Trinity College Dublin


Energy awareness solutions – empowering citizens Regis Decorme, CSTB


Prototyping the (Smart) City Henrik Korsgaard, CAVI, Aarhus University


Towards a Capability Maturity Framework for Digital Cities Giovanni Maccanni, Innovation Value Institute


Closing comments David Prendergast / Keith Ellis


Coffee, Networking, ERIC Close