Internet of Things the Personal Assistant With a Mind of Its Own

Internet of Things, technology

People certainly have come to depend on the web for most sources of information, but imagine the world of the Internet of Things, the personal assistant with a mind of its own. Developers at Nest Labs are working on a digital thermostat that would decide when to lower or raise the temperature in a given space without the aid of a human being. The state of the art thermostat would survey the presence or absence of humans to impact energy use. The concept of their product emerged from the question posed of what technology can do to combat issues with more ecological gravity than simply manufacturing personal entertainment such as computer games.

Leading away from over consumerism, this is one of many items being linked up to the internet, but as a separate identity on the web. In other words a thing with internet access, independently using the software and web. Unlike the death of the public transport system in Los Angeles due to the weight of the automobile industry in the mid-20th century, the access to the abundance of internet means that this concept may subsist in future alongside of the energy companies.

Also known as Industrial Internet, the idea continues to make inroads into international concerns. Many designs are in progress to intercept machinery failures before they occur. Companies using industrial tools with internet intelligence are implementing sensors on jet planes, oil rigs and edible products.  Reporting on-line the products gather information to assess whether any intervention or preventative action is required. In the case of food management for example, sensors indicate if a product is about to expire of has expired.

Internet of Things

Even dealing with Mother Nature is included into the potential of the Internet of Things.  Researchers are looking into being able to indicate when landslides may occur by using sensors monitoring rainfall though sound and air readings. Doubtless insurance companies may be interested in the growth of this particular technology.

For a more literal reading of the Internet of Things, a personal assistant with a mind of its own, a glance at the proposed use of sensors in the medical sector tells it all. General Electric is promoting the research to develop a system that could follow the movements of hospital personnel. Sanitary tasks and patient care could be seconded by software ensuring that employees carry out basic hygiene measures. Hospital patients could benefit from a software system that would decipher facial movements for signs of distress and quickly relay the data to the charge of the medical staff.

The virtual representation of things on the internet means the objects can be managed by computers and the internet and come to conclusions by themselves. Sensors would not be dependent on human beings, rather human being would be dependent on the sensors to direct what should happen next, or not, as in the case of the digital thermostat. In that scenario the Internet of Things would guarantee a reduction in how much the human will shell out for the electricity bill.  But then the Internet of Things, the personal assistant with a mind of its own, might just be already in state to mobilize the bank account and take care of that issue on time.

By Persephone Abbott


New York Times

Frank Watching (in Dutch)

Information Week

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