Later this fall, Windy City dwellers may start to notice -- and be noticed by -- a number of high-tech installations

In the near future, Chicago dwellers may not need to keep track of weather patterns, airborne allergens and even their own activity levels for themselves: a new initiative by the city seeks to farm various kinds of data from (and for the good of) its residents.

In the coming months, the University of Chicago, School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory will begin hosting will a network of 40 sensor nodes on installed on lampposts. The project is one of the first waves of the Array of Things initiative, a collaborative effort to gather ambient data on how Chicago functions at various levels. Led by the University of Chicago’s Urban Center for Computational Data, the initiative seeks to use the data to better support, design, and manage the city; its team also hopes to expand the upcoming small-scale system to 1,000 sensors — enough to harness data on Chicago’s entire downtown Loop district — in the next few years, Wired notes.

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