The Internet of Things – The Inevitable Future?

Technology never fails to bring us exciting developments and always promises to improve our lives. In recent years, there has been an explosion of creativity and technological innovation, with daring projects undertaken in every corner of the Earth: from wireless power, 3D printing, gamification, autonomous vehicles and technology. automatic content recognition, to mobile robots and – the subject of this article – The Internet of Things, or, as some call it, the Internet of Everything. It looks great? Well, that’s probably because it is. The promise of this company is nothing less than a game-changer, with the ultimate goal of bringing all inanimate objects to life, in a truly Frankenstein-esque way.

What is the Internet of Things?

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a scenario in which everything – device, human, network, etc. – has a unique identifier and the ability to communicate on the Internet. The idea is to create a situation where we don’t have to control each piece of equipment separately, but rather have high-level control over a complex chain of integrated events, over an “ army ” of interconnected devices that can communicate with each other. as well as with us.

The Internet of Everything combines several trends, including cloud computing, the growth of connected devices, big data, the growing use of video, and the growing importance of mobile applications over traditional computing applications. The Internet of Things is the evolving result of the ubiquitous computing trend, a trend that implied the need to integrate processors into everyday objects.

Kevin Ashton, co-founder and executive director of MIT’s Auto-ID Center, explains the potential of the Internet of Things:

“Today’s computers – and therefore the Internet – depend almost entirely on humans for information. Almost every 50 or so petabytes (one petabyte equals 1,024 terabytes) of data available on the Internet was first captured and created by humans. by typing, pressing a record button, taking a digital photo or scanning a barcode …

“The problem is, people have little time, attention, and precision, which means they’re not very good at capturing data on things in the real world … If we had computers that knew everything there was to know about the use of things.The data they gathered without any help from us – we could track and count everything, and drastically reduce waste, loss and costs . We would know when things needed to be replaced, repaired or recalled, and whether they were new or outdated. “

‘Manage your world on a smartphone’

While it still sounds like a futuristic fantasy, IoT is already happening, with many technologies in very advanced stages of development. The potential of this technology has inspired developers to produce solutions geared towards both the consumer and the B2B market.

The battle for the hearts and minds of consumers centers on home automation, with companies like SmartThings, Nest Labs and Ninja Blocks in the lead. Another important area that consumers face is the quantified self, which plays an important role in educating consumers about the potential of IoT.

Beyond the consumer, vertical B2B IoT applications hold great promise in a number of areas such as transportation, manufacturing, healthcare, and retail.

Projects in development

SmartThings started as a Kickstarter project and has evolved into a nifty company offering a range of nifty products including physical gadgets for home automation as well as apps to control them. It is built on a cloud-based software platform that allows users to install apps in their lives that make the world more responsive and enjoyable. More exciting, SmartThings builds an open platform and explicitly embraces developer communities, paving the way for a more open and diverse environment, perfect for unrestricted creativity. Applications in development cover areas such as: convenience, family, recreation and social activities, green living, health and fitness, and safety and security.

Another promising project, designed to encourage open digital systems, is Xively Cloud Services ™ (formerly Cosm and before that Pachube). It bills itself as the “ world’s first public cloud for the Internet of Things ” and aspires to provide a middle ground through which any device connected to the Internet could actually communicate with any other device.

Like Cosm before it, Xively will offer a way for different devices to connect with each other, but now with commercial terms of service for commercial users and services available free of charge for developing projects. The existence of platforms like Xively seems to be essential to building a true Internet of Things instead of what we have now.

Internet or intranet?

So far, despite all the exciting developments, the Internet of Things is still in its infancy, with most devices connecting to the Internet but still unable to communicate with each other, de facto creating a plethora of intranets of things rather. than a unified Internet. things. What is needed now for this technology to really take off is a common platform that independent devices could connect to, ideally an open source platform to maximize the potential for future innovation and engagement of people. developers. The devices offered today are also still very expensive and their range for inter-device communication is still quite limited.

In the future, the development of the IoT market will inevitably bring more compatible and affordable consumer products that will be available to more people. But, despite all the talk about the benefits of IoT, it seems no one is raising real concerns, such as: what if machines, able to communicate and communicate with each other, no longer needed from us and run away, or if not, unite and turn against us? There must be a sci-fi movie about that scenario somewhere. Either way, epic times lie ahead.

Source by Zaneta Stepien

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