We live in a very interconnected world with objects being a source of information. This is slowly giving rise to the new concept: the ‘Internet Of Things’. Let us take an example.
Jane drives a car. One day, while driving, she finds that her brakes are not working well. We need an engine check. Is it a major or minor problem? Sensors that triggered a ‘Check Engine’ signal will monitor pressure in brake lines. There are many monitors present in the car which constantly keep communicating with each other. Diagnostic Bus gathers all these data and passes it through a gateway in the car, which integrates and sorts the data. The most relevant data is transmitted to the manufacturers platform. The car’s gateway and platform must establish a secured mode of communication. Platform gathers information from Jane’s car and hundreds and thousands of cars just like hers and build a secured database of such information. The manufacturer would have added rules and logic to the platform so that when her car sends a signal that the brake fluid has dropped below regular levels, it triggers an alert in her car. Manufacturers also create apps for platform that solve specific issues.
For example, an Asset Management System. It oversees all customer cars on the road and their parts in warehouses. Data from Jane’s car is used and an appointment is scheduled on her phone for a checkup in the nearest service center. Warranty is checked, correct replacement parts are decided and sent to dealer when she arrives for the service.
If same problem happens on a large scale in many cars, specific applications are built to pin point the exact problem, they can see if these cars were made in the same factory, use same parts or dispatched on a certain date. It adds up to streamline inventory management for dealer resulting in safer cars and faster customer service.
This is what the ‘Internet of Things’ does. All devices are connected to each other via sensors that are placed in them. They can make the following types of connections: People-People, People-Things and Things-Things.
Applications using the IOT can be made to do a variety of things for us like a coffee brewer can make coffee after an alarm rings, heavy traffic on online maps can send a message to your boss saying you’ll be late for an appointment and many such things. It is estimated by 2020 that around 26 billion devices will be connected around the world, giving rise to a better security system and smarter cities.