Internet of Things (IoT) is one of the most hyped concepts in today’s technology world. However, with so much hype, there is still a lot of confusion on what does Internet of Things actually mean and what it takes to build IoT applications and how to apply it in various industries.
There exist many definitions on “Internet of Things” and even getting on to the same terminology and definition seems difficult nowadays. We have seen multiple definitions over a period of time, such as ‘Internet of Everything,’ ’Internet of Food,’ ‘Internet of your Things,’ ‘Internet of People’ and the list goes on. They all mean the same, so let’s start with a simple definition of Internet of Things.
“Internet of Things is a vision where every object in the world has the potential to connect to the Internet and provide their data so as to derive actionable insights on its own or through other connected objects.“
The object can be anything – a vehicle, machinery, airport, city, people, phone or even a shoe. From a connected vehicle solution, you can understand the driver behaviour and vehicle usage patterns, from a connected machines solution you can determine when do machines need servicing, from a connected airport solution you can understand many things like – how much time the passenger needs to wait for check-in and security, from an operational perspective it could help to optimize the passenger movement and ensure the right equipment are available at the right time to ensure quick serviceability and finally say, from a connected footwear solution you can understand how much you have run so far, and your app can automatically purchase a new pair of shoes based on the remaining shoe life.
As we can see, it’s not just about connectivity, but how to use the connected data in the context of your application or for that matter of other connected solutions to derive insights which can’t be uncovered before. Today we are seeing data (both structured and unstructured) growing by leaps and bounds available through mediums like blogs, social media, transactional systems, etc. With the advent of IoT, you will see a large volume of raw data emitting from devices like sensors. Such huge and complex set of data, if not attended to, can go wasted and opportunity lost in terms of building a smart environment around us. It has become increasingly important to process this data both in batches and real-time, applying correlations, deriving insights and predicting outcomes through appropriate analysis.
Today we are living in the world of disruptive technologies where every kind of technology is connected to form a solution. IoT is no exception. With over 100+ vendors providing 100+ devices, services, and platforms to build IoT applications, and plus we have existing systems having already employed some connectivity and automation, like manufacturing plants, it is going to take a huge effort in making these vibrant heterogeneous environment of devices talk to each other. While focusing on the issue of addressing this web of complexity, understanding the real benefits of IoT and most importantly how to get started on IoT is lost.
In this article series, our focus will be to provide a clear vision on Internet of Things and everything you should know to get started on applying and building Enterprise IoT applications in any industry. The concepts listed in the article series are applicable across industries. Till date, it’s difficult to find a single perspective of what does an Enterprise IoT stack actually mean and our intent is to provide an applicability guide that can be taken as reference for building any IoT application.
In the course of the article series, we would describe some of the key components of Internet of Things through our Enterprise IoT stack. We would look at how to apply IoT transformations incrementally to build connected solutions in various industries. At the end, we would understand the technical strategy and how to build IoT applications using IoT cloud offerings from Microsoft, IBM, Amazon and GE Predix and even build one using open source technologies.
To summarize, as part of the article series, we would cover the following –
- A detailed overview of key components of Internet of Things and the most comprehensive view of an Enterprise IoT stack.
- How to apply IoT in the context of real-world applications by covering detailed use cases on manufacturing, automotive and home automation.
- Understand the technical strategy and how to implement IoT applications using Microsoft, IBM, Amazon and GE Predix IoT offerings and various open source technologies and map it to our Enterprise IoT stack.