IoT — Internet of Things

Definition

The Internet of things (IoT) describes the network of physical objects, so known as, “things” — that are embedded with sensors, software, and other technologies that is used for the purpose of connecting and exchanging data with other devices and systems over the Internet.

Things have evolved due to the convergence of multiple technologies, real-time analytics, machine learning, ubiquitous computing, commodity sensors, and embedded systems. Traditional fields of embedded systems, wireless sensor networks, control systems, automation (including home and building automation), and others all contribute to enabling the Internet of things. In the consumer market, IoT technology is most synonymous with products pertaining to the concept of the “smart home”, including devices and appliances (such as lighting fixtures, thermostats, home security systems and cameras, and other home appliances) that support one or more common ecosystems, and can be controlled via devices associated with that ecosystem, such as smartphones and smart speakers. The IoT can also be used in healthcare systems.

There are a number of serious concerns about dangers in the growth of the IoT, especially in the areas of privacy and security, and consequently industry and governmental moves to address these concerns have begun including the development of international standards. — Wikipedia

What does that mean ?

It is possible now to connect anything, from something as small as a coin as big as a rocket as long as they are connected by internet.

History

The idea of adding sensors and intelligence to basic objects was discussed throughout the 1980s and 1990s (and there are arguably some much earlier ancestors), but apart from some early projects — including an internet-connected vending machine — progress was slow simply because the technology wasn’t ready. Chips were too big and bulky and there was no way for objects to communicate effectively.

The concept of the “Internet of Things” and the term itself, first appeared in a speech in September 1985.

Application ?

And now we had some “intelligence” about certain subject to think for you.

Home automation

Who has never forgotten to turn off a light when leaving home ? Who has never forgotten to turn off the thermostat when leaving home ? Don’t lie !

Elder care

Industrial application

  • Manufacturing

The IoT can connect various manufacturing devices equipped with sensing, identification, processing, communication, actuation, and networking capabilities. Network control and management of manufacturing equipment, asset and situation management, or manufacturing process control allow IoT to be used for industrial applications and smart manufacturing. IoT intelligent systems enable rapid manufacturing and optimization of new products, and rapid response to product demands.

Digital control systems to automate process controls, operator tools and service information systems to optimize plant safety and security are within the purview of the IoT. IoT can also be applied to asset management via predictive maintenance, statistical evaluation, and measurements to maximize reliability. Industrial management systems can be integrated with smart grids, enabling energy optimization. Measurements, automated controls, plant optimization, health and safety management, and other functions are provided by networked sensors.

In addition to general manufacturing, IoT is also used for processes in the industrialization of construction.

  • Agriculture

There are numerous IoT applications in farming such as collecting data on temperature, rainfall, humidity, wind speed, pest infestation, and soil content. This data can be used to automate farming techniques, take informed decisions to improve quality and quantity, minimize risk and waste, and reduce effort required to manage crops. For example, farmers can now monitor soil temperature and moisture from afar, and even apply IoT-acquired data to precision fertilization programs. The overall goal is that data from sensors, coupled with the farmer’s knowledge and intuition about his or her farm, can help increase farm productivity, and also help reduce costs.

In August 2018, Toyota Tsusho began a partnership with Microsoft to create fish farming tools using the Microsoft Azure application suite for IoT technologies related to water management. Developed in part by researchers from Kindai University, the water pump mechanisms use artificial intelligence to count the number of fish on a conveyor belt, analyze the number of fish, and deduce the effectiveness of water flow from the data the fish provide.The FarmBeats project from Microsoft Research that uses TV white space to connect farms is also a part of the Azure Marketplace now.

  • Food

The utilisation of IoT-based applications for improving food supply chain activities has been extensively investigated in recent years. The RFID technology adoption in the grocery supply chain has led to the real-time visibility of stocks and its movement, automated proof of delivery, increased the efficiency in logistics of short shelf life products, environmental, livestock and cold chain monitoring, and effective traceability. Researchers at the Loughborough University based on IoT technology designed an innovative digital food waste tracking system which supported the decision making in real-time to combat and reduce the food waste issues in food manufacturing. They further developed a fully automated system based on image processing to track potato wastes in a potato packing factory. IoT is currently being deployed in the food industry to increase the food safety, improve the logistics, enhance the supply chain transparency and wastage reduction.

  • Maritime

IoT devices are in use monitoring the environments and systems of boats and yachts. Many pleasure boats are left unattended for days in summer, and months in winter so such devices provide valuable early alert of boat flooding, fire, and deep discharge of batteries. The use of global internet data networks such as Sigfox, combined with long-life batteries, and microelectronics allows the engine rooms, bilge, and batteries to be constantly monitored and reported to a connected Android & Apple applications for example.

Marketing object ?

How big is the Internet of Things?

Security

IoT security is the family of techniques, strategies and tools used to protect these devices from becoming compromised. Ironically, it is the connectivity inherent to IoT that makes these devices increasingly vulnerable to cyberattacks.

Because IoT is so broad, IoT security is even broader. This has resulted in a variety of methodologies falling under the umbrella of IoT security. Application program interface (API) security, public key infrastructure (PKI) authentication and network security are just a few of the methods IT leaders can use to combat the growing threat of cybercrime and cyberterrorism rooted in vulnerable IoT devices.

The more ways for devices to be able to connect to each other, the more ways threat actors can intercept them. Protocols like HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) and API are just a few of the channels that IoT devices rely on that hackers can intercept.

Privacy ?

Consumers gradually unwittingly expose their privacy, as they do not know what data is collected and how it is used, for example by mobile applications or apps.

The percentage of people who do not read security policies and accept them without knowing is very high. In fact, there are those who try to read them, but their legal language is in most cases unintelligible to the average consumer, even allowing them to omit clauses that include the right to be heard in court.

In the specific case of the Internet of Things, privacy in layers is a policy that companies should adopt. They consist of the legal code, what is legible by man and what the machine reads.

The first refers to the actual policy that lawyers write and that judges will interpret; the second is a simple summary for the client to read and understand; while the third is the code read by search engines or software, or understood by technology that would only access the information that the consumer allows.

The implementation of the different layers would be significant progress in safety regulations.

Resources