Pune 2015. Of the 4 million, over 3 million citizens of Pune are using Pune-card and most of them keep track of the card-transactions through their ilife account. About 5 percent users still prefer a quarterly paper-statement of their ilife. I log in as Anupam.Saraph at the punecity.gov.in site. It is the single point for my ilife. Single windows are passé. No longer do I need to go to “singe-windows” at different departments or offices of the local, state or central government, I simply log into my ilife. Better still my bank, insurance company, hospital and even my local grocer are ilife enabled.
The pain of providing the same information over and over at different counters is history. The first time I registered myself to ilife, through my computer at home, I was asked to provide information to identify myself. I was requested to visit any one of the 14 ward offices to provide a photograph and my thumbprint to receive my Pune-card, my username and a password to access ilife. That was it.
My Pune-card provides me with cashless bus-travel, parking and entry into all electronic access public locations as well as electronic entry enabled private locations. It works as a cash-card and also replaces time-consuming procedures with countless forms to make applications. It simplifies and secures transactions as I can simply allow the service providers to swipe my card and take my thumbprint to access information. Only information that I have marked as allow through Pune-card will be accessed at points-of-transaction. The transaction is updated in my account on ilife.
When I log in my account includes records of every institution with whom I did a transaction, either using the Pune-card or directly through ilife. Government departments, businesses and service providers have registered themselves to use Pune-cards and ilife. In one-step through a single-point they gain access to the reliable, authentic and consistent information that they need from me thus enabling them to shorten the time it takes to service my requirements.
ilife has made my life more hassle-free and organized. All my transactions are filed into my account, no longer do I need to search for documents, certificates or obtain “NOC’s” for any transaction- even my photographs and signatures have become unnecessary. From my birth, education, marriage records to tracking my assets and accounts, my income and expenses even my taxes all get organized securely and with full privacy by ilife.
Pune having become the country’s first city to be unwired has device connectivity across the city through secure channels. Thousands of card-readers, traffic sensors, flow-meters, switches can now communicate information or take instructions on secure channels across the city. This has enabled Pune-card readers to instantaneously access the ilife servers to query or update information. ilife’s open source and open standards have enabled it to create an eco-system of services by diverse service providers. A whole industry of businesses has flourished providing solutions to enable their services onto ilife.
Even my travel has now become more hassle-free as I subscribe to itravel solutions built by third parties using the ilife framework. I can view my travel route for congestion before a journey- even book a route, at a price, for guaranteed average-time or lower travel times. I can get mobile alerts for bus routes I subscribe to or choose to be informed if the bus is delayed.
Other service providers enable my son’s tutoring for the courses he has chosen. iteach manages the city-wide teachers and the courses they run and allow me to book myself or my son onto any course run by a specific teacher at a venue- the various schools or colleges.
The city’s water distribution is now monitored over the unwired network as also the city’s lighting system. I am alerted into my ilife account of any system failures, scheduled closures or quality issues. I can in turn contribute to alerting the utilities about any problems or failures.
ilife now enables me to view my electoral ward’s map. I can choose to view the schools and display schools that can be reached on a bicycle track from my house. I can look for theaters and markets and check for bus routes that will take me directly there. I can look for restaurants I can walk to or parks and gyms that I can jog to. Third parties are running ipage services (the replacement of the yellow pages) to businesses to add additional query-able information updates about their business into the basic information on the map. Hotels are adding tariffs and booking-gateways. Restaurants are adding menus and home-delivery-gateways.
A vibrant collaboration to build the communities around local self-help is on through wiki-enabled web-pages. This has helped to bring world-class infrastructure standards to Pune. The city has already distinguished itself in creating a collaborative development plan that identified visions for the next 20 years, the challenges for the city over the next 20 years as well as various strategies to address these challenges. The city ran a world-wide simcity based competition to “Design for Pune” and generated a huge dialog about the challenges and strategies for the city. It also built a strong sense of belonging in the city, a commitment to common visions and a tremendous positive culture to address challenges and make visions happen.
As a result of this alignment, the city has made a transition to non-fossil-fuel based transportation systems, become energy surplus, has a 100% water access for 24×7 and the countries best record on recycling and managing waste. It has also been able to get the largest carbon-credits through the huge corridors of greening accomplished across all the city’s watersheds.
Web 2.0 based technologies have resulted in creating city-resource planning (CRP) across local-state and central government authorities.
Pune in 2015 is the country’s first icity. The Prime Minister has called for the creation of ilife servers in every city to ensure good-governance. The UN has decided to replicate the Pune model across the world for ensuring sustainable development and stable and value yielding economies.
— Anupam Saraph, May, 2008