The Internet of Things: What is it?

The internet of things was originally just a concept introduced in 1999 by Kevin Ashton, inventor and consumer sensor expert. At the time, he thought the future would have seamlessly connected devices that could save time and money. When Aston said this, the internet was still in its infancy and could only process the data that humans were able to enter; there was a limit to how much data a human could enter. Since then technology has come a long way, and become more integrated into our daily lives.

You can’t eat bits, burn them to stay warm or put them in your gas tank. Ideas and information are important, but things matter much more. Yet today’s information technology is so dependent on data originated by people that our computers know more about ideas than things. If we had computers that knew everything there was to know about things—using data they gathered without any help from us—we would be able to track and count everything, and greatly reduce waste, loss and cost. We would know when things needed replacing, repairing or recalling, and whether they were fresh or past their best. The Internet of Things has the potential to change the world, just as the Internet did. Maybe even more so.

Today, there is information available from just about everything. Our watches, our phones, our web surfing habits, the cars we drive, and even the buildings that we work and live in everyday. Computers are now becoming capable of taking that information we are giving through out our everyday lives, processing it, and turning it into usable data. This data can be to analyze and determine changes that could be made, or gaps in supplies, or about a thousand other ways that this information could be used to improve aspects of life.

For those of you who this is still not making sense, let me put it in a situation that may involve you:

You are sitting in your office, or classroom, working. Your smart watch or Fitbit is reading your resting vitals and registers that you are feeling warm. As this information is transferred up to the internet to be stored, the rooms thermostat, that is also connected to the internet, is notified of the raise in temperature and turns the temperature in the room down. A similar situation would occur if a sensor in the room registers that another person enters and will adjust the temperature accordingly.

What time your alarm is set tells your coffee maker what time to turn on.

Your current location tells your child that you will be late to pick them up from practice.

These are all viable ways that the Internet of Things could affect everyday life by connecting people's information together within the bigger picture.

Companies all over the globe are now working to make the many moving parts of this idea a reality. There is more being learned about it, along with more questions that are being asked.

That is why KMC is working with Dell and Intel in order to help make sure that the right questions get raised, and the correct answers are given when it comes to building control systems. Building automation is something we are passionate about and hope to be apart of as this new endeavor in the world of technology moves forward.

Some of the main concerns that come from the Internet of Things is the security of it, as well as how plausible it is to actually accomplish.

The security of a building that has all of its main control systems online is a very real and very serious issue. It is a topic that has critics skeptical and the world watching. While there are glitches that are being worked out, it is something that is growing and advancing as more is studied and learned about how to connect so many platforms together. It is evolving rapidly and will continue to grow along with the Internet of Things. Security is something that we are very careful and aware of and we hope to apart of making sure that when our product goes in a building and is put online, that building is as safe and secure as possible.