There's been a lot of buzz over the last two years around the "Internet of Things," or IoT. However, more recently a subcategory of IoT, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), has been getting a lot of well-deserved attention. For those who've not yet heard of this trend, the IIoT is basically the use of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies in manufacturing. It brings together many key technologies--including machine learning, big data, sensors, machine-to-machine (M2M) computing, and more--in an orchestrated fashion within manufacturing operations. The IIoT promises to drive massive economic transformations in the coming years across multiple industries, including manufacturing, health care, and mining.
It might seem like nightmare scenario. A terrorist organization or nefarious nation state decides to derail the global internet by faulting the undersea fiber optic cables that connect the world. These cables, which run along the ocean floor, carry almost all transoceanic digital communication, allowing you to send a Facebook message to a friend in Dubai, or receive an email from your cousin in Australia.
The vision of an open Internet is characteristic of Silicon Valley's tech pioneers. The free and efficient flow of packets of bits requires decentralization to prevent bottlenecks occurring at the central points as the system scales, open standards to allow interoperability, and IP addresses to identify the correct destination. We take this system for granted, but one does not need a very long memory to recall a time when IT was dominated by proprietary protocols like AppleTalk or DECnet, and when one could not easily send an email message from AOL to Prodigy. Yet the Internet has not simply improved--it has evolved into an open system as a result of philosophical and political decisions, as well as technical ones.2,5 In a recent Communications "Cerf's Up" column, Vinton Cerf argued there is a fundamental division between the IP layer and the application layers of the Internet, which together function to keep the open Internet flowing, and what he called the "virtual political layer," higher in the stack where the content is consumed and judged.
Networked thermostats, fitness monitors, and door locks show that the Internet of Things can (and will) enable new ways for people to interact with the world around them. But designing connected products for consumers brings new challenges beyond conventional software UI and interaction design. This book provides experienced UX designers and technologists with a clear and practical roadmap for approaching consumer product strategy and design in this novel market. By drawing on the best of current design practice and academic research, Designing Connected Products delivers sound advice for working with cross-device interactions and the complex ecosystems inherent in IoT technology.
Parts of the world will be excluded from the internet for decades to come without major efforts to boost education, online literacy and broadband infrastructure, experts have warned. While half the world's population now uses the internet, a desperate lack of skills and stagnant investment mean the UN's goal of universal access, defined as 90% of people being online, may not be reached until 2050 or later, they said. The bleak assessment highlights the dramatic digital divide that has opened up between those who take the internet and its benefits for granted and those who are sidelined because they either lack the skills to be online, cannot afford access or live in a region with no connection. "If there is any kind of faltering in the rate of people coming online, which it appears that there is, then we'll have a real challenge in getting 70%, 80% or 90% connected," said Adrian Lovett, CEO of the World Wide Web Foundation, an organisation set up by the inventor of the web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee. "There should be no complacency that we will somehow magically progress towards everyone being online," Lovett added.