Makes Intelligent Environments A Platform For Innovation : John Gordon, Chief Digital Officer, GE
Updated on: 17 Dec 2015
In October, GE launched Current, a startup focusing on bringing to market a holistic energy-as-a-service offering absent from the industry today. Former IBM Watson executive John Gordon just became Current's first chief digital officer.
At IBM, Gordon was responsible for launching innovation programs like Smarter Cities, and his new GE role will allow him to build on that expertise. Intelligent street lamps developed by Current are already gathering data in San Diego and Jacksonville. They could make everything from parking to traffic and law enforcement easier.
Gordon sat down with GE Reports to talk about his job.
GE Reports: What's the idea behind Current?
John Gordon: Current is rethinking the most pervasive infrastructure in industry: lighting and energy. Let's look at intelligent lighting. It's the equivalent of the cell phone in the industrial world, as we look into the future. Once the cell phone added data connectivity, GPS, a camera and a microphone it became a platform for innovation. It put all those sensors on a single platform and enabled developers to drive all kinds of innovation for consumers that many of us would never have thought of.
Since lighting is already everywhere, it will also become a ubiquitous platform for data and innovation in the commercial, industrial, and city markets. Our intelligent LED street lamps can already see and hear things and measure air quality, for example.
GER: How will you make that happen?
JG: Initially, we will develop the core LED lighting technology and infuse it with sensors. Then we'll add analytics and the initial set of software solutions that will inspire the industry and spur new ideas.
We won't build all of the solutions, just like Apple doesn't write all of the apps for iPhones. We'll build enough for people to see what's possible and give them ideas on how to leverage the data. In parallel, we will also partner with people in the industry. The goal is to open up this intelligent lighting environment as a platform for innovation in the industrial world.