San Francisco goes wireless and real-time to reduce traffic

When I last wrote about San Francisco’s innovative plan to reduce congestion through market-based pricing of parking spots, I assumed some of the more futuristic features of the system were still a long way off. Well, turns out I was wrong.

The city is already installing a network of wireless sensors in the asphalt based on the “smart dust” technology to come out of UC Berkeley. Once in place, battery-operated “bumps” will not only relay information about open parking spots to drivers via street signs and smart phones, they’ll also convey real-time information about congestion and traffic and flow to city planners.

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