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Buckle Up for the Internet of Things

smart-fridgeIf you follow technology, you may be disappointed that your refrigerator is not yet telling you when you’re running low on milk or eggs. That’s been the de facto standard example of how the “Internet of Things” will change our lives for so long it feels almost cliché.

But the good new is, yesterday at CES Samsung Electronics CEO Boo-Keun Yoon made the timeline to the IoT a little more real. He said 90% of Samsung products will be connected to the internet by 2017, and every single product they make will be by 2020.

Samsung makes a broad spectrum of products including phones, TVs, washers, baby monitors, light bulbs…and, of course, refrigerators. 100% of their product line is a bold commitment, but indicates how pervasive IoT will really be, and 2020 will be here before we know it. If you look backwards by five years, an internet connected TV was barely a concept and today it’s hard to find a new TV that isn’t connected (75% of Samsung models.… Read the rest

New Solace Message Routers Accelerate Enterprise Applications and Enable Big Data, Cloud and IoT

Combined with Release of SolOS 7.0, New Models Enable Application-Aware Networks that Improve Performance, Robustness and TCO of IT Infrastructure

Ottawa, Ontario, June 3, 2014 Solace Systems announced today two new message routers and a major new version of its operating system, SolOS 7.0, that together meet the diverse data movement demands of today’s enterprise applications and emerging big data systems, cloud computing architectures and internet of things initiatives.

Each of these systems needs an efficient way to move large amounts of information over different kinds of networks with unique requirements in terms of latency, throughput, guaranteed delivery, fault tolerance and more. Solace’s hardware-based platform lets companies replace a wide range of discrete data movement technologies (such as messaging middleware, open source, web streaming, transaction management, WAN optimization, etc.) with a powerful application-aware network. Application aware-networks make it easier and less expensive to move data between applications while offering greater capacity, performance and robustness than other solutions.… Read the rest

Upgrading the Plumbing for the Internet of Things

plumber-smallThe fascination with the Internet of Things is reaching a fever pitch as daily headlines paint pictures of a completely connected future.

On Tuesday the Washington Post hosted an online forum titled All Things Connected that examined the impact of the Internet of Things on many aspects of our future. Much of the ground covered was familiar territory – connected cars, wearables, medical devices and of course, the security concerns that come along with any “next great innovation”.

Forbes contributor Howard Baldwin summarized how the forum relates to what matters to CIOs:

“From an IT standpoint, that scenario spreads into a variety of areas: networking, wireless connectivity, big data, privacy and security, analytics – everything that CIOs should be working on getting good at. The maximum benefit only comes from the data when it’s networked together.”

His point is that the Internet of Things isn’t a brand new way of computing – we will still be collecting, integrating, analyzing and automating, just like we’ve been doing for decades.… Read the rest

The Internet of Bessie and Fido

iStock_000010867130SmallThe Internet of Things is not on the way, it’s here.
And it’s coming for the animals.

At Mobile World Congress last week, while the rest of the world was talking about wearable technology like Samsung Galaxy Gear Fit and Sony SmartBand, NTT Docomo unveiled a new service that lets farmers know when pregnant cows are about to give birth by tracking their body temperature and sending an alert when Bessie’s ready to go into labor. The service has already been deployed with over 30, 000 cows, and it’s apparently reduced calf mortality from 10% to 1% while saving farmers time and energy by eliminating  repeated trips to the barn to check on the cows nearing full term.

Earlier in February, NTT also announced a service that allows pet owners to track their dogs. It works very much like the activity trackers mentioned above, seeing how much exercise the dog gets and monitoring eating and sleeping habits.… Read the rest

Tesla Model S: The Worlds Most Expensive WebSocket Demo

When I first got behind the wheel of my fully electric Tesla Model S, the 17″ multi-touch console display immediately got me thinking about the plethora of cool apps that it could enable. Imagine porting MAME and running classic video games like Atari’s Pole Position using the actual steering wheel and pedals as the drive-by-wire controls.

More practically, imagine using the onboard GPS to define geocoded zones that dynamically adjust the height of the Active Air Suspension to avoid scraping speed bumps and ditches that would otherwise fail to clear the front spoiler or the underlying battery pack.

I would love to have the Android app Torque Pro running on the console and streaming real-time telemetry from the onboard computer to a cloud hosted application for post-race — sorry post commute — analytics. I’ll let you know how that goes in a later post.

[video_lightbox_youtube video_id=”Q0OjotbUcYg” width=”640″ height=”480″ auto_thumb=”1″ autoplay=”yes”]

I’m still waiting for Tesla to release the native SDK for this platform, but in the meantime there’s a lot you can do via the embedded browser which I’ve discovered does support HTML5 WebSockets.… Read the rest

A Slice of Pi

rpi-1024x682Remember the $500 Network Computer (NC) that Larry Ellison used to talk about all the time?  Time to meet the $35 Network Computer M2M node.

The Raspberry Pi Model B is much more than the Arduino microcontroller devices popular with the Maker Faire crowd. It’s a complete computer with Ethernet, USB Ports, SD Card slot, 256MB RAM, 1080p HDMI video, all running a standard Debian “squeeze” Linux distribution running on it’s ARM-based SoC. Add 4 AA batteries, a WiFi dongle, and some custom software and you have a very capable wireless sensor node in a box (box not included). The waitlist for these tiny embeddable computers is growing and an ecosystem of complimentary add-ons has sprung to life overnight.  Everything from cases, to cameras, to the inevitable Arduino to Rasperry Pi bridge. With the one-two punch of the sub-$50 price point of the Pi and the emerging $200 price point of the full blown touch screen tablets (Nexus 7, Kindle Fire, et al.) we should finally be at the tipping point where we will get an explosion of devices connected to the Internet of Things.… Read the rest