Projects Use Phone Data to Track Public Services

The city’s (New York) Metropolitan Transportation Authority has been trying to provide a better sense of predictability in recent years by adding displays in stations that state when the next train is expected. Now, a Web development firm called Densebrain says that it can do the same thing at practically no cost, by analyzing how people lose phone service when they head underground…

Boston is developing a system called Street Bump that uses a smartphone’s accelerometer and GPS system to detect when a driver hits a pothole and then sends that information to city officials. Techniques like this may help cities collect data that until recently would have required expensive network sensors.