Welcome!

@ThingsExpo Authors: Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan, William Schmarzo

Related Topics: @ThingsExpo, Java IoT, @BigDataExpo

@ThingsExpo: Blog Post

Critical Communications & the Internet of Things By @ImadMouline | @ThingsExpo #IoT

The true future of IoT lies in connecting devices, big and small, to critical communication systems

Please, More Conversations About Critical Communications and the Internet of Things

The Internet of Things, IoT, is without a doubt one of the most buzzed about topics in our tech-obsessed culture right now.

While I agree that the near-endless possibilities of the consumer side of IoT will transform our everyday lives for the better, making things simpler and more connected, it's not the only angle our society should focus on. There is a huge opportunity for the industrial IoT to significantly impact the world - especially in critical situations.

Mainstream attention is being paid to machine-to-machine communications, but a whole host of new technologies are maturing to make these communications even more actionable during critical situations. This is the real future of our "connected" world. Our ability to connect machines to people for immediate action will continue to improve the way we communicate, work and live.

Below are three examples that illustrate just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the benefits of an industrial IoT that is appropriately people-aware.

First, imagine that your local community's water dam was connected to a critical communication system - a comprehensive notification platform. Now imagine that every time it needed to be opened to release water, the system would automatically trigger a notification to the public works department to enable them to take the appropriate action. And not just one simple text message that could potentially (and likely) be missed or ignored, but a multi-modal notification tailored to reach the "need to know" person(s) via text, email, phone, etc. until it is confirmed that they've been reached and agree to take on the necessary tasks or next steps. If the right person does not confirm that he or she is taking care of the issue, then the dam will know to escalate the issue to the appropriate person. That peer could be a peer with the right skills sets who is the next go-to person in a published schedule rotation, or it could be a supervisor who is on-call that day and who can make the appropriate decision when supplied with all the relevant information. The dam can simply keep trying to reach the right people based on simple or complex rules, until satisfied that the right human being is dealing with the situation.

How does the dam know who the "need to know" people are, or who the "right" human being is? A public works infrastructure using an automated, IoT-capable critical communications platform would know what members of the team are the right ones to call, who has the right skill set to deal with the issue at hand and is available, and whose location is close enough to the dam to get there in time. Additionally, the system would recognize the severity level of the incident and tailor its communications accordingly. A severe issue may require alerting seven people at the Public Works Department immediately through all available channels and triggering an aggressive escalation policy, while a routine check-in could be sent with far less urgency to recipients' in boxes. A potential catastrophic issue would entail automatically messaging and calling all the residents who are at risk and giving them detailed information on how to get to safety, while activating sirens, road signs, and other public means of mass notification. This so-called "smart dam" isn't some pipe dream that is years away. We are already there, and we are only getting started.

Second, think of the possibility of things like "smart trashcans" that connect to city employees when they are ready to be emptied, or better yet, tell headquarters they don't need to be emptied, directing crews to the areas that have the highest density of full trashcans. One automated message could stop a truck from being deployed, saving both time and money. Another industrial or corporate example is a smart building access badge system that keeps track of employees' last known location, so that everyone in an affected building, including visiting employees, can be notified or accounted for in case of an emergency.

What's next? Now, and in the future, devices, people and things will continue to automatically trigger communications in a smart and actionable fashion to ensure that the right messages get sent to the right people, based on their location, skill sets or simply, their ability to respond at the right time. The possibilities are endless for any organization, hospital, school or community that needs to act quickly and decisively during an incident. Next time you step outside, take a moment to look around and admire how IoT isn't going to just be a major component of shopping and personal chores, it will become a vital part of society's backbone, helping to keep us all connected, safe and secure.

I'm optimistic there will be more conversations that focus on these "big picture" opportunities to improve the way we communicate and respond, and less on the "smart fridge." Let's focus on public infrastructure, workplace controls, medical devices that can send HIPAA compliant messages to healthcare teams, IT platforms and all other types of critical connected systems and collectively pursue a society that is not just smart but is accurate, automated and downright brilliant when time is of the essence. The true future of IoT lies in connecting devices, big and small, to critical communication systems to ensure that the right teams are called in to help when needed, that the right decision-makers are chased down to approve a course of action that is then carried out automatically, or that the right people are informed of an impending critical situation that could impact their well-being if left unheeded.

More Stories By Imad Mouline

Imad Mouline is the CTO for Everbridge, the leading unified critical communications platform trusted by corporations and communities of all sizes. In this role he leads the company’s product roadmap, innovation and research and development. He previously served as CTO of Compuware APM, Gomez and S1 Corporation.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that SIGMA Corporation will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. uLaser flow inspection device from the Japanese top share to Global Standard! Then, make the best use of data to flip to next page. For more information, visit http://www.sigma-k.co.jp/en/.
High-velocity engineering teams are applying not only continuous delivery processes, but also lessons in experimentation from established leaders like Amazon, Netflix, and Facebook. These companies have made experimentation a foundation for their release processes, allowing them to try out major feature releases and redesigns within smaller groups before making them broadly available. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Brian Lucas, Senior Staff Engineer at Optimizely, will discuss how by using...
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lead...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CAST Software will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CAST was founded more than 25 years ago to make the invisible visible. Built around the idea that even the best analytics on the market still leave blind spots for technical teams looking to deliver better software and prevent outages, CAST provides the software intelligence that matter ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Daiya Industry will exhibit at the Japanese Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Ruby Development Inc. builds new services in short period of time and provides a continuous support of those services based on Ruby on Rails. For more information, please visit https://github.com/RubyDevInc.
As businesses evolve, they need technology that is simple to help them succeed today and flexible enough to help them build for tomorrow. Chrome is fit for the workplace of the future — providing a secure, consistent user experience across a range of devices that can be used anywhere. In her session at 21st Cloud Expo, Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, will take a look at various options as to how ChromeOS can be leveraged to interact with people on the devices, and formats th...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Yuasa System will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Yuasa System is introducing a multi-purpose endurance testing system for flexible displays, OLED devices, flexible substrates, flat cables, and films in smartphones, wearables, automobiles, and healthcare.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Taica will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Taica manufacturers Alpha-GEL brand silicone components and materials, which maintain outstanding performance over a wide temperature range -40C to +200C. For more information, visit http://www.taica.co.jp/english/.
SYS-CON Events announced today that SourceForge has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SourceForge is the largest, most trusted destination for Open Source Software development, collaboration, discovery and download on the web serving over 32 million viewers, 150 million downloads and over 460,000 active development projects each and every month.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Nihon Micron will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Nihon Micron Co., Ltd. strives for technological innovation to establish high-density, high-precision processing technology for providing printed circuit board and metal mount RFID tags used for communication devices. For more inf...
Enterprises have taken advantage of IoT to achieve important revenue and cost advantages. What is less apparent is how incumbent enterprises operating at scale have, following success with IoT, built analytic, operations management and software development capabilities – ranging from autonomous vehicles to manageable robotics installations. They have embraced these capabilities as if they were Silicon Valley startups. As a result, many firms employ new business models that place enormous impor...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MIRAI Inc. will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MIRAI Inc. are IT consultants from the public sector whose mission is to solve social issues by technology and innovation and to create a meaningful future for people.
Widespread fragmentation is stalling the growth of the IIoT and making it difficult for partners to work together. The number of software platforms, apps, hardware and connectivity standards is creating paralysis among businesses that are afraid of being locked into a solution. EdgeX Foundry is unifying the community around a common IoT edge framework and an ecosystem of interoperable components.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Dasher Technologies will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Dasher Technologies, Inc. ® is a premier IT solution provider that delivers expert technical resources along with trusted account executives to architect and deliver complete IT solutions and services to help our clients execute their goals, plans and objectives. Since 1999, we'v...
SYS-CON Events announced today that TidalScale, a leading provider of systems and services, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. TidalScale has been involved in shaping the computing landscape. They've designed, developed and deployed some of the most important and successful systems and services in the history of the computing industry - internet, Ethernet, operating s...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Massive Networks, that helps your business operate seamlessly with fast, reliable, and secure internet and network solutions, has been named "Exhibitor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo ®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. As a premier telecommunications provider, Massive Networks is headquartered out of Louisville, Colorado. With years of experience under their belt, their team of...
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM has been named “Diamond Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st Cloud Expo, which will take place on October 31 through November 2nd 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, California.
Infoblox delivers Actionable Network Intelligence to enterprise, government, and service provider customers around the world. They are the industry leader in DNS, DHCP, and IP address management, the category known as DDI. We empower thousands of organizations to control and secure their networks from the core-enabling them to increase efficiency and visibility, improve customer service, and meet compliance requirements.
SYS-CON Events announced today that TidalScale will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. TidalScale is the leading provider of Software-Defined Servers that bring flexibility to modern data centers by right-sizing servers on the fly to fit any data set or workload. TidalScale’s award-winning inverse hypervisor technology combines multiple commodity servers (including their ass...
As hybrid cloud becomes the de-facto standard mode of operation for most enterprises, new challenges arise on how to efficiently and economically share data across environments. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Dr. Allon Cohen, VP of Product at Elastifile, will explore new techniques and best practices that help enterprise IT benefit from the advantages of hybrid cloud environments by enabling data availability for both legacy enterprise and cloud-native mission critical applications. By rev...