Anthony Townsend is a research director at the Institute for the Future (IFTF) in Palo Alto, California.
Contributed 26 posts
Anthony has been researching the implications of new technology on cities and public institutions for over a decade. As Research Director at the Institute for the Future (IFTF) in Palo Alto, California, Anthony's work focuses on several inter-related topics: pervasive computing, the urban environment, economics and demographics, public and nonprofit organizations, and the media industry.
Prior to joining IFTF, Anthony enjoyed a brief but productive academic career at New York University, where he directed research sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the Department of Homeland Security.
Anthony is active in international futures research networks, and received a Fulbright scholarship in 2004 to study the social impacts of broadband in South Korea. He was one of the original founders of NYCwireless, a pioneer in the municipal wireless movement.
Anthony received his Ph.D. in urban and regional planning from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2003.
In Memoriam: William Mitchell
<div>I learned with great sadness about the loss of William Mitchell, 65, this past friday after a long battle with cancer. Bill was the chair of my Ph.D. committee, a mentor and a friend.</div><div><p> </p>
Municipal Vaporware: Why NYC's Data Mine is A Data Dump
This morning, Mayor Mike Bloomberg unveiled New York City's long-awaited Big Apps contest. Big Apps seeks to promote the Internet industry in the Big Apple (it's sponsored by the New York City Economic Development Corporation) and make local government more transparent.<p>I've been following the evolution of open data initiatives at the municipal level for about a year now, and was really hoping that New York was going to set the bar for future efforts across the country. It doesn't. In fact it's hard to understand why some notable local tech superstars like investors <a href="http://www.avc.com/">Fred Wilson</a> and <a href="http://www.betaworks.com">John Borthwick</a> would sign on to such a lame effort.</p>
Rethinking Lower Manhattan: What If?
<p> Since its founding in the mid 1990s, Alliance for Downtown New York has long been one of the world's leading business improvement districts. This non-profit organization has presided over the reinvention of New York's historic Financial District as a thriving 24-hour live/work district, while retaining a respectable share of the city's financial services sector. The Alliance built a network of Wi-Fi hotspots that lit up nearly every major public space in the district - not just outdoor locations like Bowling Green and City Hall Park, but also indoor atria like the Winter Garden and 60 Wall Street.
The Future of Research Parks and Technology-led Economic Development
<!--StartFragment--><p style="text-indent: 0.5in" class="MsoPlainText"><span style="font-size: 16px" class="Apple-style-span">The American economy has long relied upon technological innovation to drive its economy. Today,basic investment in science and technology is once again taking center stage,as a cure for both our economic and environmental ills.</span></p>
DIYcity.org - Leveraging Web 2.0 for Smarter Cities
<p>Here in New York City, there is an incredibly popular burger stand in Madison Square Park called The Shake Shack. It's one of the touchpoints for Silicon Alley, and a great meet-up spot. The problem is that its usually insanely crowded, with an hour-long line stretching well across the park.</p><p>Not to be defeated, Silicon Alley geeks created the Shake Shack Twitter Bot, which serves as a sort of chat room for people to report wait times at the Shake Shack. It's a few dozen lines of code that leverages Web 2.0 technology to make the city smarter, more efficient, and more fun.</p>