Bringing IoT to What Is Already Here
For some people, say Internet of Things (IoT) and they think refrigerators on the Internet. Yes… this is available, but IoT is about be much more the cool connected gadgets. IoT really illustrates the synergies between existing technologies, like Internet communications, cloud computing, and mobile access; these synergies bring forward something new and exciting. Two capabilities makes a device capable participant in the Internet of Things
How smart does “Smart” have to be? That depends. Smartness is not something in its own domain with some machine IQ score needed to achieve the title of smartness. Smart here is... enabling functionality that allows some degree of device autonomy. When the device can provide or act on information, it becomes smarter. When this capability is coupled with communications with other devices or people, it becomes a smart + connected device and a member of the Internet of Things.
Evolution to Smart + Connected
Some IoT devices will be the result of evolution where smart + connected became a part of the product's profile as it evolved. Think about the Nest Thermostat (which we really like). Thermostats for years did only the simple job of turning the heat and cooling on and off. Then...
Thermostats gained integrated timers to save energy costs by better aligning use with need.
Next came connected thermostats that allowed central home-automation systems to integrate the thermostat's actions with other systems in the house.
Finally, Nest creates the smart + connected thermostat that makes it an autonomous participate in the Smart Home and the Internet of Things.
Something Never Imagined
Then there are items, like the Amazon Echo, that just create something new, different, and for most people something never imagined. Think about it... who would have thought 5 years ago of a smart + connected speaker that plays streamed music, accepts voice commands for home automation and personal productivity.
The accelerant to both of the above patterns is the convergence of many technology trends.
The proliferation of Cloud computing and computational processing as a service
Open-source hardware (which owes part of its existence to open-source software)
A fundamental change in the concept of ownership and the acceptance of use over own.
LooUQ believes these patterns together are essential to the Internet of Things and the building blocks of our rapidly accelerating connected world. The availability of small, relatively inexpensive, connected micro-controllers (we assume they are smart) and the growing interest in maker-ification... you have a really exciting time waiting for the next genesis of innovation. These trends together lower barriers of entry for developers to create new IoT capable devices for numerous communities by allowing the separation of the business domain from the necessary IoT infrastructure.
"Builders" (manufactures) wanting to enable device self-diagnostics and create autonomous devices. Devices capable of intelligent self-action and notification.
"Owners" (organizations and individuals) wishing to instrument and control their assets beyond what is available via off-the-shelf offerings.
"Makers" developing that spark of an idea without needing to build know and build all aspects of the solution.