What is the Internet of Things?

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a concept containing physical cloud-connected devices. It includes devices like vehicles, mobile phones, other embedded devices. These devices can transmit data from different sensors to the cloud.

Description of the Internet of Things

The Internet of Things is the devices which can talk to each other. “The Internet of Things is made up of devices – from simple sensors to smartphones and wearables – connected together” as per the saying of Matthew Evans, the Head of IoT Programme at techUK. With the help of these connected devices and automated embedded services, it is possible to gain information and analyze it.

Experts estimate that the IoT will consist of about 30 billion objects by 2020.

Characteristics of IoT

There are mainly six key characteristics of IoT (Internet of Things)

Intelligence

Together algorithms and compute (i.e. software & hardware) provide the “intelligent spark” that makes a product experience smart. Consider Misfit Shine, a fitness tracker, compared to Nest’s intelligent thermostat. The Shine experience distributes compute tasks between a smartphone and the cloud. The Nest thermostat has more compute horsepower for the AI that makes them smart.

Connectivity

Connectivity in the IoT is more than slapping on a Wi-Fi module and calling it a day. It enables network accessibility and compatibility. Accessibility is getting on a network while compatibility provides the common ability to consume and produce data. If this sounds familiar, that’s because it is Metcalfe’s Law and it rings true for IoT.

Sensing

We tend to take for granted our senses and ability to understand the physical world and the people around us. Sensing technologies provide us with the means to create experiences that reflect a true awareness of the physical world and the people in it.

Expressing

Expressing enables interactivity with people and the physical world. Whether it is a smart home or a farm with smart agriculture technology, expressing provides us with a means to create products that interact intelligently with the real world. This means more than just rendering beautiful UIs to a screen. Expressing allows us to output into the real world and directly interact with people and the environment.

Energy

Without energy, we can’t bring our creations to life. The problem is we can’t create billions of things that all run on batteries. Energy harvesting, power efficiency, and charging infrastructure are necessary parts a power intelligent ecosystem that we must design. Today, it is woefully inadequate and lacks the focus of many product teams.

Safety

As we gain efficiencies, novel experiences, and other benefits from the IoT, we must not forget about safety. As both the creators and recipients of the IoT, we must design for safety. This includes the safety of our personal data and the safety of our physical well-being. Securing the endpoints, the networks, and the data moving across all of it means creating a security paradigm that will scale.

Different development boards used in IoT

There is a huge number of development boards are available for the Internet of Things. Top or most used five boards are as given below.

  1. Arduino Uno
  2. Raspberry Pi
  3. Intel Edison
  4. Adafruit Flora
  5. Particle Photon
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