Welcome!

@ThingsExpo Authors: Zakia Bouachraoui, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Carmen Gonzalez

Related Topics: @ThingsExpo, Mobile IoT, @DXWorldExpo

@ThingsExpo: Article

IoT Is Busy Innovating | @ThingsExpo #IoT #M2M #API #Microservices

The IoT space is still very much a fledgling industry in many respects

IoT Is Busy Innovating, But Where's the Integration?
By Paul Bruce

Last month, SmartBear was out in full form at O'Reilly Solid, a conference all about the Internet of Things (IoT) [this year]. We chatted with anyone and everyone who is building APIs to support their cool gadgets or back-end systems. What we found was...curious.

What Is the Internet of Things to Everyone Else?
The concept behind the Internet of Things has been around for a while now, ATMs being some of the first enterprise, hardened, network-connected, managed devices for mainstream consumer use. So too with our mobile phones, these are not new concepts to network technicians or hardware geeks. But for the rest of us, we simply never imagined the extents that the "ubiquity of connectedness" would take all other industries, from biotech to automotive, personal care to agriculture, entertainment to custom manufacturing. The list is as long as our imaginations.

However, the IoT space is still very much a fledgling industry in many respects. The economics aren't apparent; companies are still stuck under the "innovators bar," finding something good enough to ship a minimum viable number of units. The safety and privacy considerations are staggeringly overlooked by both technology providers and end-users alike. Big businesses like IBM and HP are rushing to come up with strategies to retrofit existing solutions to fit the space or even create all new ones to support the new software production cultures of a post-agile tech world.

I had a chance to talk to a friend, Mark Boyd, long-time writer and traveling analyst for ProgrammableWeb and The New Stack about how the current state of the IoT industry seems to be so hyper-focused on innovation.

"It seems for these folks [focused on IoT at O'Reilly Solid] to be very much about getting to the point where they're shipping 10,000 units...getting the product out there to an audience", says Mark. "It's not so much about solving the problem of integration or how to make that hardware work with other hardware."

Innovation IS Integration, and Must Happen at the Same Time
From a broader development and ecosystem perspective, a "worry about integration later" approach could be a very costly short-sighted blunder, even for businesses just getting off the ground. Much of the protocols and hardware platforms have still remained proprietary, representing a barrier of entry for mainstream developers. From the very beginning, selecting open standards that are safe and reliable is a minimum viable design decision that should be made early on, specifically to foster rapid acceptance by developers and encourage partnerships to larger players in the field too.

The same goes for aspects of privacy and data ownership over the information being produced from IoT devices. It's just too easy to plug something in and connect it up...without considering the implications of doing just that. I asked Mark about this too, and he continued:

"I don't think the data privacy or data ownership considerations are thought through early enough in the conversation, especially around the rights of the end user to be able to access their own data or confidence in where it's stored. " Interesting, but he wasn't done there. "On the other side, what gives me a bit of relief is, McKinsey Global Institute presented their IoT report here yesterday, fascinating. One of the things Michael Chui talked about was how little of the data exhaust is being looked at. So there is a whole lot of IoT big data, but because humans are lazy, I think the nefarious uses are something that no one has been looking at. I think there is the potential for problems, but at the moment the main use of IoT data is really around identifying alerts in the system and then for communicating real time data flow...but then all the data exhaust about given behavior that's been collected, none of that's being used."

While Mark jokes, he also expressed hope that this breathing space we have before the data exhaust gets used allows for more time to openly discuss and educate around data rights. After our interview, Mark shared that one possible ideal vision would be for all of a user's data to be stored by a third party data broker and that it could then be sold back to the device makers (or consent given to the device maker to collect it directly and receive, for example, a discounted subscription fee) or on to other data wranglers. In this way, an individual's data would be akin to their currency and the storage of personal data akin to a bank account. Mark shared that one of the benefits of this sort of approach would be that it intrinsically symbolizes the value of an individual's data so that each of us can consider who we share our data with or what we "spend" it on, as it were.

You Might Not Be Looking at Your Own Data, but Who Is?
An immediate lack of interest over exhaust data makes sense; we're already inundated with oceans of data all day long, even if you aren't in a high-tech industry. But there's little cost to storing that data long-term, and all it takes is a fast, very small bit of coagulation in the IoT technology space (specifically around protocols) to realize the potential of that data. Simply map-reduce, aggregate, and extract intelligence. It's not hard, and insurance companies already use your Fitbit data to set pricing and fee structures.

Riding on the heels of her most excellent presentation at APIdays San Francisco the week before O'Reilly Solid, Jessica Groopman of the Altimeter Group recently released a research report "Consumer Perceptions of Privacy in the Internet of Things" which indicates that one of the foremost barrier facing IoT is consumer concern over use and sharing of connected device data.

Mark finishes with, "And here's again where APIs would enable 3rd parties to be able to start innovating and creating new products from that data exhaust", a topic near and dear to our hearts here at SmartBear: the connected world through the lens of quality. APIs, apps, solutions...are nothing if they're not accurate, reliable, and safe. No house stands the test of time unless the foundation is solid.

What's Next for the Internet of Things?
Two words: big intelligence. There is a huge opportunity to extract meaningful opportunities from IoT data exhaust once it is collected and normalized. That places a huge amount of responsibility over big platform companies to become mass repositories of IoT data, but especially responsible are the IoT vendors who must make a choice over which platform to use.

Fortunately, the IoT industry not only benefits from years of traditional field experience (such as in ATMs, cell services, medical and industrial equipment) but also from recent mass adoption of API design and incremental architecture patterns like Microservices. To Mark's point, true innovation in the IoT space will only really explode once the immediate hardware hype gentrifies to a point where open standards allow throngs of developers to iterate, poke, and prod at the big data, not just twiddle with the devices.

Once IoT data is in a platform, more than just developers can realize its full potential. Data analysts, business decision experts, and policy makers will all have very critical jobs­­­ in the IoT space. In order for a technology to become a brand new industry, it must by definition include people from all areas of business, not just hardware and software geeks (like us). IoT is rapidly approaching that point.

More Stories By SmartBear Blog

As the leader in software quality tools for the connected world, SmartBear supports more than two million software professionals and over 25,000 organizations in 90 countries that use its products to build and deliver the world’s greatest applications. With today’s applications deploying on mobile, Web, desktop, Internet of Things (IoT) or even embedded computing platforms, the connected nature of these applications through public and private APIs presents a unique set of challenges for developers, testers and operations teams. SmartBear's software quality tools assist with code review, functional and load testing, API readiness as well as performance monitoring of these modern applications.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Bill Schmarzo, Tech Chair of "Big Data | Analytics" of upcoming CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York (November 12-13, 2018, New York City) today announced the outline and schedule of the track. "The track has been designed in experience/degree order," said Schmarzo. "So, that folks who attend the entire track can leave the conference with some of the skills necessary to get their work done when they get back to their offices. It actually ties back to some work that I'm doing at the University of San...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things'). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing. IoT is not about the devices, its about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. This paper discusses the considerations when dealing with the...
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...
If a machine can invent, does this mean the end of the patent system as we know it? The patent system, both in the US and Europe, allows companies to protect their inventions and helps foster innovation. However, Artificial Intelligence (AI) could be set to disrupt the patent system as we know it. This talk will examine how AI may change the patent landscape in the years to come. Furthermore, ways in which companies can best protect their AI related inventions will be examined from both a US and...
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.
Chris Matthieu is the President & CEO of Computes, inc. He brings 30 years of experience in development and launches of disruptive technologies to create new market opportunities as well as enhance enterprise product portfolios with emerging technologies. His most recent venture was Octoblu, a cross-protocol Internet of Things (IoT) mesh network platform, acquired by Citrix. Prior to co-founding Octoblu, Chris was founder of Nodester, an open-source Node.JS PaaS which was acquired by AppFog and ...
The deluge of IoT sensor data collected from connected devices and the powerful AI required to make that data actionable are giving rise to a hybrid ecosystem in which cloud, on-prem and edge processes become interweaved. Attendees will learn how emerging composable infrastructure solutions deliver the adaptive architecture needed to manage this new data reality. Machine learning algorithms can better anticipate data storms and automate resources to support surges, including fully scalable GPU-c...
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...