Intelligent Cities.

stae: Symbiotic Technology And Ecology

If you’ve been following along, a few things are clear: 1) people are moving to cities, fast; 2) almost everything is being connected to the internet and generating data; 3) this data has tremendous value; 4) the way modern companies communicate programmatically with government is non-existent; 5) the first major step in creating smart cities is repairing this technology gap to enable real-time data streaming, regulation, taxation and analysis.

That’s why we created stae. And why we’re building

We provide a central location — a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), as the cool kids say––where anyone from private companies to governing bodies to constituents can send data or consume regulation programmatically. That information can be aggregated, analyzed, and visualized to solve complex city problems, leading to massive strides in efficiency. We also firmly believe that city data has real revenue value to municipalities that is today totally unrealized, resulting in higher taxation for constituents and often more regulations.

More broadly, consider us the City-as-a-Service.

Without stae, the data is typically owned by a sensor vendor or SaaS company, it lives desperately from the other data of the city, and, in many instances, vendors are tricking cities into requiring them to purchase their own data back from the manufacturer. This results in more cost as well as a loss of ability to distinguish insight from correlation. Some companies claim “undue burden” (they would have to build our product) so simply refuse to comply with data share requirements.

Richard Bizley

Since launching, we’ve confirmed what we already know: It’s really hard to get people to believe in cities, and even harder to get municipal governments to believe in themselves. However, this is getting better, and quickly.

Data is critical for understanding and improving city operations, but it isn’t always easy to gather and analyze. Stae is helping us clear barriers and opened our data in ways never before possible. — Brian Platt, Dir of Innovation, Jersey City.

As we have deployed our product into Atlanta, Georgia and Jersey City, New Jersey we’ve found, as you may imagine, that it’s not a quick process for cities to adopt new technologies. Their caution is understandable, however, as local municipalities have a duty to protect the safety, security, and capital of local residents.

They have also suffered at the hands of years of enterprise businesses walking in the front door of city hall and out with a bag of cash disproportionate to the service or product offered. This is partly why you don’t see a lot of funding or buzz around city technology/software/etc. It’s hard. Yet this problem is worth solving, and why we’ve dedicated ourselves to the mission of helping cities. is successfully establishing the first civc data-driven inter-connective tissue in the U.S. The revolution is upon us.— Xavier Hughes, Chief Innovation Officer at U.S. DOL

Once stae is implemented — it changes everything for the city. It opens the floodgates for modern software capable private companies to seamlessly interact, comply with, or share information with local government that will benefit all urban citizens. It’s pretty magic. ✨

Data is cool, and useful!

We know there are a lot of serious challenges facing cities. The future of transportation, the future of housing, privacy, drones, SaaS, efficiency, the list goes on… these issues should concern all urban citizens. These issues need to be solved, and as we know, the best disruptors of the modern age are technologists.

We also know that human communication will play a central role in making positive changes. Things like empathy, sensitivity, and altruism are rarely talked about in business, but we need good people incentivized to build good solutions to city problems. By creating easy to use and easy to understand platforms and systems for cities, we change the way they operate to be services first.

As Jerry Chen once said, turning the city into a developer tool is the ultimate platform. In helping to build DigitalOcean, I learned first hand the power of giving developers new ways to interact with infrastructure, be it servers or street lights. Our product enables anyone to build on top of and for the city. This is a noble and worthy pursuit for many entrepreneurs, and we expect a whole host of civic technologies to spring up using our data marketplace and API, solving issues like homelessness, procurement, city planning or public safety.

Tom Schenk Jr, CDO for City of Chicago

Stae moves cities from reactive to proactive and provides a new set of tools to put constituents first. We value an open ecosystem over walled garden or proprietary locking, and will wherever possible invest to progress innovation in society for the betterment of humanity. We will put community over profits, worry less about measuring the return of giving, and look to measure the value delivered to the greater civic ecosystem. We will respect the privacy and security of humans and will work to protect them to the best of our abilities.

Guiding Principles:

Community, Simplicity, Humility, Love.

Core Values:

  • Deliver Truth — Open and Honest Communication.
  • Drive Collaboration — Operate as a team, we over me.
  • Develop Empathy — Work to understand, accept and embrace human diversity.
  • Direct Curiosity — Focus curiosity constructively, question the expected, disagree and move on.
  • Default to Transparency — Share as much as ethically and morally allowed.
  • People First — Everything we do, internally and externally, is for the benefit of humans at large.

Until the next time,
– John