Introduction to the concept; internet of things; (IoT)
What is the Internet of Things?
The World Wide Web was created so that people on Earth could be in touch with each other. But at the end of the decade, the number of servers and automatic devices connected to the Internet exceeded the number of all people on Earth. From that moment on, the Internet ceased to be the "Internet of people", but became the "Internet of things". Today, the number of automatic devices connected to the Internet is about 10 billion, and exceeds the number of smartphones, tablets and personal computers combined.
The concept of "Internet of Things" involves the interaction of various kinds of devices connected to a single network, without human intervention. The most common IoT cluster architecture is the Controller-managed device structure. Sensors and controlled devices are united into a single network, and control is carried out using the program installed on the control computer (controller). Sensors are connected to the controller, usually either via Wi-Fi or via Bluetooth.
Challenges in IoT Software Development
Developing software for the Internet of Things is much more difficult than developing regular web, mobile, or personal computer software. If, for example, building websites is a well-documented IT industry with numerous guidelines, recommendations and development platforms, then there are often no standard methods and guidelines for programming IoT devices.
If a controller or other IoT device is running Android, then, as a rule, it requires the development of custom firmware, since the device must be programmed for strictly defined functions. At the same time, the production of devices is usually located in China, and for this reason communication with the manufacturer is difficult. In addition, the manufacturer is not very willing to develop custom firmware ordered by the device buyer.
Many sensors are based on microcontrollers. These are the simplest processors that are programmed in C or Assembler and require "development boards" to be ordered separately from the manufacturer.
So, to create a successful IoT startup, software development should be ordered from a company with experience with microcontrollers and custom Android devices.
Investing in the Internet of Things
An important point when deciding to launch a startup is to study general trends in the direction of investments in the IT market. For example, mobile apps are out of fashion - the cost of attracting a user is extremely high, it is difficult for a developer to overcome the threshold at which the income from the average user will exceed the cost of downloading, and therefore it is difficult to get investments in this market sector.
The Internet of Things, by contrast, is now supported by many large companies. The development of this direction is beneficial both for equipment manufacturers, since new devices require the creation of new processors and printed circuit boards, and for software developers. In addition, unlike the Android and iOS infrastructure with a pronounced artificiality of the environment and the monopoly of companies providing infrastructure, the Internet of Things is represented by a wide range of firms - developers of hardware and software libraries.
Internet of Things (IoT, Internet of Things) - in simple words, it is a technological concept of connecting all things in the world to the Internet for remote control via software and real-time data exchange through a server or directly.
⚠ The IoT concept allows companies and people to be more connected to the world around them and to do meaningful work at a more efficient level.
What is the Internet of Things (IoT) for?
Any thing connected to the Internet gets a unique opportunity to receive and transmit information. This ability makes the thing "smart" (smart), which means more effective: "smart watch", "smart speaker", "smart home", "smart office", "smart car".
You are probably familiar with these examples. To be smart, a thing doesn't have to have a super storage or supercomputer inside. All she has to do is connect to a super storage server or supercomputer. It's great to be in touch!
What is the Internet of Things in simple examples?
Ideally represented, the Internet of Things is what brings home, city services, transportation, and all kinds of commercial services together in one global, unified communications network.
In reality, the technology rests on the complexity of establishing a reliable connection (it does not always catch the connection well) and the high cost (an LED smart lamp with a modem will always be more expensive than the conventional "Ilyich's Lamp"), so the use of an IoT system should be -really in demand.
Here are some examples of people using the IoT right now:
IoT (Internet of Things): where to start?
Each of us right now can join the world of the Internet of Things (IoT) without any difficulties. Most electronics manufacturers are actively introducing devices with remote control and smart online functions into their product range.
Smart home installations have become popular in the home environment. For commercial purposes, Internet-based sensors for cargo opening, transport movement, activation by characteristics, and so on are created. Offices, factories, workshops and logistics systems are becoming "smart".
So where to start to use the Internet of Things?
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a concept for the development of Internet technologies towards automation, and the exclusion of human participation from most of the processes of the IT infrastructure. The Internet of Things through the exchange of information between various sensors and sensors should fully automate the processes of managing groups of devices.
Most often, when considering the potential of the Internet of Things, they give an example of how a smart home works. Indeed, in any house there are heating, ventilation, air conditioning and lighting systems. And it would be nice to make it all work by itself, without unnecessary human intervention ..
IoT technology is associated with the unification of many intelligent objects into a single system. Recommendation Y. 06 brings this representation to virtual objects. According to this recommendation, the IoT provides real-time communication between things. IoT systems are the future, and below we will look at the basic concepts of these systems, as well as some scenarios for their use.
IoT systems architecture
IoT consists of a set of different infocommunication technologies that enable it to work. The architecture of the Internet of Things shows how different technologies are interconnected and includes the following main layers:
Here we are directly talking about devices. This is the lowest level of the IoT architecture. It consists of smart objects connected to sensors. They provide the collection and processing of information in real time for appropriate purposes. For example, to measure temperature, pressure, travel speed, location, and more. The development of microprocessors has led to a reduction in the physical size of hardware sensors and made it possible to implement them everywhere.
Usually, things have a connection to gateways that connect to a local or wide area network. But there are also self-sufficient devices that can work on the basis of networks of cellular operators (connection using Wi-Fi or Ethernet). The gateways themselves are hubs that support a specific standard or protocol that allows communication with "Things".
As a specific example of an IoT system without a gateway, below is an image describing how a GPS tracker works with an NB-IoT module:
Thus, there are devices that do not need a gateway, and they have a standard communication interface. They are self-sufficient and to coordinate with the cloud they have enough Internet access via wire, GSM / 3G / LTE, NB-IoT, Wi-Fi, etc.
In the example with the tracker in the figure above, the operator assigns an IP address to the device (or non-IP technology can be used) via NB-IoT (L1, L2) and releases the device to the Internet. The tracker itself can support MQTT, CoAP, or simply send its payload in UDP packets to the platform address specified in the settings via the public network.
Sensors, which are characterized by low power consumption and low data rates, form wireless sensor networks (WSN - Wireless Sensor Network). They are gaining in popularity because they can contain many more battery-enabled sensors and cover large areas. This is achieved by applying a mesh network topology. As an example, we can cite the ZigBee standard (IEEE 802. 5.), which is increasingly used in home automation systems using the "Smart Home" method.
Gateway The gateway and network layer
You've probably heard about the Internet of Things (IoT), but haven't wondered exactly where this technology is used in real life. In fact, it can be found in many areas - here are some of the most striking examples.
To explain all the capabilities of IoT devices in the home, you need a separate article - there are many. For example, there are smart thermostats, air conditioners, speakers, pet feeders and other devices that perform everyday household functions. It is one of the most popular and promising uses for the Internet of Things.
IoT devices in agriculture
Smart devices are actively used in agriculture: both in farming and in animal husbandry. Among the best IoT devices in this area are drones and various tools for checking soil composition, predicting climate change, livestock health and tracking the location of sick animals.
Industrial Internet of Things
This area even uses a special term - the Industrial Internet of Things or IIoT. Some of the best industrial IoT applications include all kinds of sensors, software systems, and big data analytics for futuristic designs and precise computing. Smart machines improve productivity and correct common human errors, especially those related to quality control and sustainability.
IoT in retail
Smart devices dramatically improve the shopper's shopping experience. The most desirable products and services appear right in front of the client's eyes at the right time and in the right place. The Internet of Things allows you to fine-tune advertising, improve the supply cycle and the process of analyzing popular models. Retail IoT use cases also include contactless payments and smart shopping apps.
Internet of Things in Healthcare
Health deserves a special place on the list of the best IoT applications. In it, the Internet of Things directly affects people's lives and illustrates the importance of connected healthcare as a field.
It is clear what the Internet is. And what is this strange and clumsy expression "Internet of Things"? We tell you what it is and why you probably use the Internet of Things.
Concept and history of the Internet of Things
The appearance of the concept was predicted by Nikola Tesla in 1926. He argued that the radio will be improved and become a "big brain", and other small instruments will be able to connect to it and easily fit in a jacket pocket.
Actually, that's what happened: with the help of the Internet, millions of computers are connected into a single network, and ordinary smartphones or tablets have become "small tools".
There are many explanations of the term "Internet of Things". They all differ in interpretation, but a common part can be distinguished.
The Internet of Thing (IoT) is a global computing network that unites various kinds of physical objects that can interact with each other and the outside world.
The key feature is that not only computers, smartphones and other powerful enough computing devices will participate in the network, but almost any thing.
The first "Internet thing" was created in 1990 by John Romkey, one of the founders and developers of the TCP / IP protocol. John connected a regular toaster to the computer, and also taught the kitchen appliance to start and turn off using the computer commands Get and Set. The toaster was controlled remotely, and it was also possible to program its autonomous operation.
The term itself first appeared only in 1999, but until 2021 the world did not see any innovations regarding the Internet of Things. It is not surprising that only servers, PCs, laptops and smartphones possessed processing power and appropriate interfaces for connecting to the Internet. There was simply no need to embed “stuffing” into household appliances for interacting with the Internet, not to mention the potential rise in the price of products.
However, with the development of wireless technologies, cheaper production of microcircuits and widespread globalization, the concept of the Internet of Things has begun to be resorted to more often. ARM microprocessors with increased energy efficiency compared to desktop models began to gain more and more popularity.
Another important event happened in 2021 - the number of devices connected to the global network exceeded the world's population. And the number of such "things" will only grow, because electronics is beginning to be built into almost everything. By 2021, the number of "smart things" has approached 50 billion, including lamps, microwave ovens, refrigerators, air conditioners and more.