Let me tell you a bit about my Internet of Things.
For as long as I can remember, I have been fascinated by Home Automation and it’s potential to simplify our lives. My enthusiasm for Electronics started a long time ago…when I was a teenager.
I would design and then build electronic circuits, based on analog and/or TTL technologies and write programs for my ZX-Spectrum. My devices would allow you to toggle lights by clapping hands, drive around and do nothing but detect obstacles… you know the usual stuff that iRobot does very well… One day, I even built a telephone keypad so I didn’t have to turn the dial on the old rotary device 😉 It felt like burning too much energy to dial a 6 digit number. This was long before DTMF was invented and touch tone devices were available, my device would just send the right amount of pulses :).
Yeah, everything was cool, simple, exciting and very limited, even for open minded, creative hardware engineers.
Today, the amount of options is just overwhelming; Arduino, Rasberry PI etc, the hardest part is to decide on what to do. How to do it, is not a problem anymore, however, a decision about what technology to use, could be “stressful”.
Building a standalone system using easily accessible libraries and frameworks for one of the hardware platforms allows folks with just a basic knowledge of electronic hardware to join countless “Legions of Hardware Freaks”.
Everyday, you can read about the new “inventions”, new Arduino based garage door opener, or perhaps, new set of instructions on how to put together even less expensive Sues Vide machine controllable from your iPhone or Android device. This is extremely exciting, as it proves that human creativity has no limits and that we can combine fun and usefulness in all those projects.
Now, having all those great projects, based on different technologies and protocols, how do we interconnect them together, how do we start your tea if you are just about to get home, how do we remind you about doing some shopping for groceries you need for today’s dinner? How could we have only one central management console to controls it all..
That universal method, or language or protocol or actually set of methods and protocols is called Internet of Things, or IoT.
This is just one of the many aspects of our day to day lives which IoT covers, but this is something which affects us directly and something we see each and every day. The other, and I would say, main goal behind IoT is m2m or machine to machine communication. For example, your alarm system reporting to a data center about intruder, basically scenarios where you will only see the resulting actions and not necessary be aware of all the details involved. In some cases, you will not even connect the dots, and not really understand that certain actions where triggered by some events… Everything connected together, everything communicating using common communication mechanism, Internet of Things , Internet of Everything….