Insights with Internet of Things

Software Design Analyst

The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus. In today's world, you can roam around the world with just some finger clicks and not even need to click. There is a top hot mega shot trend in this modern date time, and that is Internet of Things. The Internet of Things (IoT) is a system of interrelated computing devices, mechanical and digital machines, objects, animals or people that are provided with unique identifiers and the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction. In IoT technology, there is the inter networking of physical devices, vehicles, buildings and other items embedded with electronics, software, sensors, actuators and network connectivity that enable these objects to collect and exchange data. Perhaps, we can sometimes referred IoT as the Internet of Everything (IoE). Some good examples of IoT are Thermostats, cars, lights, refrigerators connecting with network and exchanging data using embedded sensors.

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Where is This IoT Applicable?


What are the platforms for IoT?


  • Connectivity / M2M (Machine to Machine) platforms: 
    These platforms focus mainly on the connectivity of connected IoT devices via telecommunication networks (e.g., SIM-cards) but rarely on the processing and enrichment of different sets of sensor data.

  • IaaS back-ends: 
    Infrastructure-as-a-service backends provide hosting space and processing power for applications and services. These backends used to be optimized for desktop and mobile applications but IoT is now also in focus. (An example is IBM Bluemix – not to be confused with IBM IoT Foundation)

  • Hardware-specific software platforms: 
    Some companies that sell connected devices have built their own proprietary software backend. They like to refer to the backend as an IoT Platform. Since the platform is not open to anyone else on the market it is debatable whether one should call it an IoT Platform.

  • Consumer/Enterprise software extensions: 
    Existing enterprise software packages and operating systems such as Microsoft Windows 10 are increasingly allowing the integration of IoT devices. Currently these extensions are often not advanced enough to classify as a full IoT Platform, but they may get there soon.

What are the Pros and Cons of IoT?


Pros of IoT

  • Communication

IoT encourages the communication between devices, also famously known as Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communication. Because of this, the physical devices are able to stay connected and hence the total transparency is available with lesser inefficiencies and greater quality.

  • Automation and Control

Due to physical objects getting connected and controlled digitally and centrally with wireless infrastructure, there is a large amount of automation and control in the workings. Without human intervention, the machines are able to communicate with each other leading to faster and timely output.

  • Information

it is obvious that having more information helps making better decisions. Whether it is mundane decisions as needing to know what to buy at the grocery store or if your company has enough widgets and supplies, knowledge is power and more knowledge is better.

  • Monitor

The second most obvious advantage of IoT is monitoring. Knowing the exact quantity of supplies or the air quality in your home, can further provide more information that could not have previously been collected easily. For instance, knowing that you are low on milk or printer ink could save you another trip to the store in the near future. Furthermore, monitoring the expiration of products can and will improve safety.

  • Time

The amount of time is saved because of IoT could be quite large. And in today’s modern life, we all could use more time.

  • Money

The biggest advantage of IoT is saving money. If the price of the tagging and monitoring equipment is less than the amount of money saved, then the Internet of Things will be very widely adopted. IoT fundamentally proves to be very helpful to people in their daily routines by making the appliances communicate to each other in an effective manner thereby saving and conserving energy and cost. Allowing the data to be communicated and shared between devices and then translating it into our required way, it makes our systems efficient.

  • Automation of daily tasks leads to better monitoring of devices

The IoT allows you to automate and control the tasks that are done on a daily basis, avoiding human intervention. Machine-to-machine communication helps to maintain transparency in the processes. It also leads to uniformity in the tasks. It can also maintain the quality of service. We can also take necessary action in case of emergencies.

  • Efficient and Saves Time

The machine-to-machine interaction provides better efficiency, hence; accurate results can be obtained fast. This results in saving valuable time. Instead of repeating the same tasks every day, it enables people to do other creative jobs.

  • Saves Money

Optimum utilization of energy and resources can be achieved by adopting this technology and keeping the devices under surveillance. We can be alerted in case of possible bottlenecks, breakdowns, and damages to the system. Hence, we can save money by using this technology.

  • Better Quality of Life

All the applications of this technology culminate in increased comfort, convenience, and better management, thereby improving the quality of life.

Cons of IoT

  • Compatibility
    Currently, there is no international standard of compatibility for the tagging and monitoring equipment. I believe this disadvantage is the most easy to overcome. The manufacturing companies of these equipment just need to agree to a standard, such as Bluetooth, USB, etc. This is nothing new or innovative needed.

  • Complexity
    As with all complex systems, there are more opportunities of failure. With the Internet of Things, failures could sky rocket. For instance, let’s say that both you and your spouse each get a message saying that your milk has expired, and both of you stop at a store on your way home, and you both purchase milk. As a result, you and your spouse have purchased twice the amount that you both need. Or maybe a bug in the software ends up automatically ordering a new ink cartridge for your printer each and every hour for a few days, or at least after each power failure, when you only need a single replacement.

  • Privacy/Security
    With all of this IoT data being transmitted, the risk of losing privacy increases. For instance, how well encrypted will the data be kept and transmitted with? Do you want your neighbors or employers to know what medications that you are taking or your financial situation?

  • Safety
    Imagine if a notorious hacker changes your prescription. Or if a store automatically ships you an equivalent product that you are allergic to, or a flavor that you do not like, or a product that is already expired. As a result, safety is ultimately in the hands of the consumer to verify any and all automation.

As all the household appliances, industrial machinery, public sector services like water supply and transport, and many other devices all are connected to the Internet, a lot of information is available on it. This information is prone to attack by hackers. It would be very disastrous if private and confidential information is accessed by unauthorized intruders.

  • Technology Takes Control of Life

Our lives will be increasingly controlled by technology, and will be dependent on it. The younger generation is already addicted to technology for every little thing. We have to decide how much of our daily lives are we willing to mechanize and be controlled by technology.