You may have recently heard the expression “Internet of Things”. What you may not know however is that the phrase was reportedly coined by Kevin Ashton in a corporate presentation he made in 1999. Back then, he was talking specifically about RFID (radio frequency identification) in the supply chain.
Fifteen years later the Internet of Things has morphed into something so expansive, Cisco has now latched onto the phrase Internet of Everything. That makes a lot more sense since we’re talking about connecting sensors, scanners, clothing, people, traffic systems, vehicles, animals… you name it.
In 2009, Ashton revisited the theme in an article “That ‘Internet of Things’ Thing“, where he looked back on how the term came to be and how the concept has the potential to change the world. Just last month, Fierce Mobile IT provided a compelling timeline of the evolution from application specific barcode scanning systems, through some of the technology milestones that have made IoT (or IoE if you prefer) what it is today – from chipsets to open frameworks to Google Glass. It’s worth a look.
The size and scope of all this will be enormous. Cisco projects that 50 billion devices and objects will be connected by 2020. Connectivity will be throughout cities, industries, homes, hospitals, schools and farms. Cities with completely “smart” agendas, such as Barcelona and Chicago, are well on their way to becoming the poster children for the IoT cause.
At the end of the day however – whether monitoring production lines or traffic patterns; recording a patient’s vital signs; tracking migrating animals or pipeline flows; or simply turning on your entertainment system from afar – reliable connectivity will be everything.
And that’s the one thing in all of this that will never change.
Do you have any IoT projects to share?
By the Cel-Fi Team