The Internet of Things

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In computing, the Internet of Things refers to a, usually wireless and self-configuring, wireless network between objects, such as household appliances. The concept of the internet of things is attributed to the original Auto-ID Center, founded in 1999 and based at the time in MIT.

The idea is as simple as its application is difficult. If all cans, books, shoes or parts of cars are equipped with minuscule identifying devices, daily life on our planet will undergo a transformation. Things like running out of stock or wasted products will no longer exist as we will know exactly what is being consumed on the other side of the globe. Theft will be a thing of the past as we will know where a product is at all times. The same applies to parcels lost in the post.

If all objects of daily life, from yogurt to an airplane, are equipped with radio tags, they can be identified and managed by computers in the same way humans can. The next generation of Internet applications (IPv6 protocol) would be able to identify more objects than IPv4 which is currently in use. This system would therefore be able to instantaneously identify any kind of object.

The Internet of objects should encode 50 to 100,000 billion objects and follow the movement of those objects. Every human being is surrounded by 1,000 to 5,000 objects.

A complementary view, from the world of the Semantic Web focusses instead on making all "things" (not just those electronic, smart, or RFID-enabled) addressable by the existing naming protocols, such as URI. The objects themselves do not converse, but they may now be referred to by other agents, such as powerful centralised servers acting for their human owners.

Obviously these two approaches converge as more objects become progressively addressable and more intelligent. This is unlikely to happen in any situation short of spime, and the two views have significantly different implications in the interim. In particular, the universal addressability approach rapidly includes things that cannot have communication behaviours of their own, such as abstract data documents.


The « Internet of Things » will likely be a « non deterministic and fully open cyberspace » in which autonomous and intelligent entities or virtual objects will act in full interoperability and will be able to auto-organize themselves depending on the context, circumstances or environments : it will host Ambient intelligence (built upon Ubiquitous computing).

This will give those entities / objects the ability to « share » with any other player to make their own « objectives » converging (general, delegated or internal ones).

It will be event driven, « bottom-up » made and will act at any subsidiary level ; each actor will be self-referenced.

It will also be considered as a « Complex system » due to the huge amount of different and various links, interactions, between various and different actors and due to its capacity to integrate new actors with no difficulty.

In this « Internet », the meaning of an event will not necessary be based on, either a deterministic or syntactic model but will be based on the context of the event : this will also be a Semantic Web.

Consequently, it will not necessary need any « common system of reference » or « common standard » that would not be able to address billions of exceptions and errors being generated in such a complex environment.

Actually, predicting everything in this environment would be no more than defining a "global finality" for everything that is just not possible with the current « top down » approaches.

In this Internet of Things, made of billions of parallel and simultaneous events, time will no more be used as a common and linear dimension but will depend on each « entity » (object, process, information system, etc.). This Internet of Things will be accordingly based on massive parallel IT systems (Parallel computing).

Ubiquitous computing

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ubiquitous computing (ubicomp) is a post-desktop model of human-computer interaction[citation needed] in which information processing has been thoroughly integrated into everyday objects and activities. As opposed to the desktop paradigm, in which a single user consciously engages a single device for a specialized purpose. In the course of ordinary activities, someone "using" ubiquitous computing engages many computational devices and systems simultaneously, and may not necessarily even be aware that they are doing so.

This paradigm is also described as pervasive computing, ambient intelligence, or more recently, everyware.When primarily concerning the objects involved, it is also physical computing, the Internet of Things, haptic computing,
and things that think.

At their core, all models of ubiquitous computing (also called pervasive computing) share a vision of small, inexpensive, robust networked processing devices, distributed at all scales throughout everyday life and generally turned to distinctly common-place ends. For example, a domestic ubiquitous computing environment might interconnect lighting and environmental controls with personal biometric monitors woven into clothing so that illumination and heating conditions in a room might be modulated, continuously and imperceptibly. Another common scenario posits refrigerators "aware" of their suitably-tagged contents, able to both plan a variety of menus from the food actually on hand, and warn users of stale or spoiled food.

Ubiquitous computing presents challenges across computer science: in systems design and engineering, in systems modelling, and in user interface design. Contemporary human-computer interaction models, whether command-line, menu-driven, or GUI-based, are inappropriate and inadequate to the ubiquitous case. This suggests that the "natural" interaction paradigm appropriate to a fully robust ubiquitous computing has yet to emerge - although there is also recognition in the field that in many ways we are already living in an ubicomp world. Contemporary devices that lend some support to this latter idea include mobile phones, digital audio players, radio-frequency identification tags, GPS, and interactive whiteboards.

In his book The Rise of the Network Society, Manuel Castells suggests that there is an ongoing shift from already-decentralised, stand-alone microcomputers and mainframes towards entirely pervasive computing. In his model of a pervasive computing system, Castells uses the example of the Internet as the start of a pervasive computing system. The logical progression from that paradigm is a system where that networking logic becomes applicable in every realm of daily activity, in every location and every context. Castells envisages a system where billions of miniature, ubiquitous inter-communication devices will be spread worldwide, "like pigment in the wall paint".

Mark Weiser coined the phrase "ubiquitous computing" around 1988, during his tenure as Chief Technologist of the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC). Both alone and with PARC Director and Chief Scientist John Seely Brown, Weiser wrote some of the earliest papers on the subject, largely defining it and sketching out its major concerns.

Recognizing that the extension of processing power into everyday scenarios would necessitate understandings of social, cultural and psychological phenomena beyond its proper ambit, Weiser was influenced by many fields outside computer science, including "philosophy, phenomenology, anthropology, psychology, post-Modernism, sociology of science and feminist criticism." He was explicit about "the humanistic origins of the ‘invisible ideal in post-modernist thought'", referencing as well the ironically dystopian Philip K. Dick novel Ubik.

MIT has also contributed significant research in this field, notably Hiroshi Ishii's Things That Think consortium at the Media Lab and the CSAIL effort known as Project Oxygen. Other major contributors include Georgia Tech's College of Computing, NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program, UC Irvine's Department of Informatics, Microsoft Research, Intel Research and Equator, Ajou-University UCRi & CUS.

One of the earliest ubiquitous systems was artist Natalie Jeremijenko's "Live Wire", also known as "Dangling String," installed at Xerox PARC during Mark Weiser's time there. This was a piece of string attached to a stepper motor and controlled by a LAN connection; network activity caused the string to twitch, yielding a peripherally noticeable indication of traffic. Weiser called this an example of calm technology.

More recently, Ambient Devices has produced an "orb", a "dashboard", and a "weather beacon": these decorative devices receive data from a wireless network and report current events, such as stock prices and the weather.

Ubiquitous computing encompasses a wide range of research topics, including distributed computing, mobile computing, sensor networks, human-computer interaction, and artificial intelligence.

Adam Greenfield is head of design direction for service and user interface design at Nokia. He was previously an instructor at New York University's Interactive Telecommunications Program, where he co-taught a class called Urban Computing. He lives and works in Helsinki, Finland.

Ubiquitous computing--almost imperceptible, but everywhere around us--is rapidly becoming a reality. How will it change us? how can we shape its emergence?

Smart buildings, smart furniture, smart clothing... even smart bathtubs. networked street signs and self-describing soda cans. Gestural interfaces like those seen in Minority Report. The RFID tags now embedded in everything from credit cards to the family pet.

All of these are facets of the ubiquitous computing author Adam Greenfield calls "everyware." In a series of brief, thoughtful meditations, Greenfield explains how everyware is already reshaping our lives, transforming our understanding of the cities we live in, the communities we belong to--and the way we see ourselves.

[ame=]YouTube - Everyware- The dawning age of ubiquitous computing 1of8[/ame]

[ame=]YouTube - Ubiquitous Computing: Big Brother's All-Seeing Eye - Part 1[/ame]