Moving data from products embedded with sensors, electronics or software onto a common network is the essence of the Internet of Things.
The Apollo 11 mission in 1969 landed two humans on the moon, powered by a mere computing power existed at that time. Now just imagine the power of a standard smartphone! The significance of the internet in modern life cannot be undervalued. We have reached a stage where products such as watches, glasses, refrigerators, cars, and many other sensory devices can be regulated and monitored by the internet. The Internet of Things is a term used to explicate this trend.
To put it boldly, anything with a switch can be a part of internet of things. Right from fuel engines of airplanes to toasters and coffee makers, every device has the power to be part of a network.
Need for Internet Of Things
So why actually we need IOT?
Well, there are sundry areas where internet of things platform can be a boon to us: –
In Building Smart Homes
Smart homes are the example of modern latest technical innovations. These homes can easily sense the presence of humans and they can also control the temperature and light thereby making the humans’ life simpler and amazing.
In Making Smart Cities
Smart cities are possible with the application of the internet of things! This technological innovation can not only control traffic and congestion but also perform monitoring & security.
In Healthcare Industry
We are heading to a future where physicians can make a diagnosis of the patient from a remote place and advise accordingly! And all this seems to be possible with the application of internet of things.
The concept of Internet of Things in the Past
IOT is much thought of and well-researched technology! Really! The idea of combining sensor as well as intelligence was widely discussed between the 1980s to 1990s. Although a vending machine-connected via internet was initiated during this time yet, all the efforts towards it were really slow as the technology to develop it was unknown. Kevin Ashton was said to be the one who coined the phrase “Internet of Things”.
Ashton’s IOT concept was based on RFID technology that was used in connecting other devices. That concept was different from today’s concept of IOT- that solely relies on IP networking.
Internet of Things: Bane or Boon?
The upsurge of robotics and automation has already stressed the importance of cohesive progress in all streams of engineering. One field cannot move forward at the expense of the other. As the saying goes- “Together we stand, divided we fall!”
IoT is of a similar ilk as well. The coalescing of all devices onto a single network has applications more far-reaching than many are ready to accept. The end game of IoT is the conception of ‘smart’ cities. These will be places monitored and operated solely on a network. From waste management and traffic control to finding more effectual ways of consuming energy, IoT has far broader consequences than previously imagined.
This vision is shared by a multitude of companies such as Dell, GE, and Cognizant who are investing billions of dollars into IoT research. It seems that the oil well of the future has been discovered and the stakeholders are clamoring for their share.
But is IoT all flowers and roses?
The risk of having all that data online seems a risk to many industry experts. Many tech companies and governments are often targets of cyber-attacks. One thing is clear from the chaos: internet security is a myth!
Thus, while researching IoT and its windfalls, companies will also have to develop security systems capable of handling data of such magnitude. Furthermore, these security systems will have to be tested for various doomsday scenarios. Imagine a hacker gaining access to user data by hacking their IoT powered watch or coffee maker! These issues will have to be resolved before we can move forward with the idea of a world operated through the internet.
As is the case with any revolutionary idea, certain boundaries will have to be established to moderate the flow of data in an environment as perceived by IoT.