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Kaazing Authors: Jason Bloomberg, Kaazing Blog, Jnan Dash, Jeremy Geelan, Stacy Gorkoff

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The Internet of “Many Different Things”

by Vikram Mehta, Chief Executive Officer, Kaazing

Kevin Ashton coined the term the “Internet of Things” (IoT) in 1999 while working at Proctor & Gamble. At that time, the idea of everyday objects with embedded sensors or chips that communicate with each other had been around for over a decade, going by terms such as ‘ubiquitous computing’ and ‘pervasive computing’. What was new was the idea that everyday objects – such as a refrigerator, a car or a pallet – could connect to the Internet, enabling autonomous communication with each other and the environment.

My new blog series – “Accelerating the Web for the Internet of Things” is inspired by Kevin Ashton’s more recent observation in The Economist’s informative IoT report.

giga-om-logo“What we have right now is a lot of IoT-type technology that is heavy on ‘things’ and light on Internet. That’s the bit that needs to change. ”
~ GigaOM

What does one the world’s largest energy-producing and trading companies have in common with three of the world’s top ten banks, one of America’s top three professional sports franchises, one of Europe’s most sophisticated rail transportation networks, one of the top three transportation companies in the USA, one of the world’s top five commercial airlines, one of the world’s best known cable and satellite networks, and one of the world’s most valuable retail brands?

They have all have seen the future – an always-on, always-connected, and always-informed world, a world in which every imaginable thing is connected to every other thing. More importantly, they’ve realized that being connected in such a manner to their suppliers, customers, employees, and machines that are at the center of their business, is central to their success.

There is something else these global enterprises have in common. They all rely on technology, products, and services from Kaazing, specially engineered to give them a head start on their competition in this brave new world, a world that has aptly been called the “Internet of Things” (IoT).

The Internet of Things is the next big thing for it will, amongst other things, help build intelligent cities; enable better management of the earth’s scarce resources; reduce energy consumption by giving us Internet control of the furnace at home; warn you that the transmission on your car is about to fail and scheduling a visit to the car service facility; help reduce the incidence of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome); provide better and preventive care for the elderly; provide insurance companies with the ability to offer pay-as-you-go insurance to customers based on their driving behavior; provide retailers with new and unique ways to connect with and engage customers; enable payments in real time; and much more…

This brave new world will include millions of embedded electronic measuring devices: thermostats, pressure gauges, pollution detectors, cameras, microphones, glucose sensors, EKG machines, Electroencephalograph machines, and equipment that will probe and monitor everything from cities to endangered species. Sensors will monitor the atmosphere, our ships, highways and fleets of trucks, and even – in a movement called the Quantified Self (QS) – a person’s daily life in terms of inputs (e.g. food consumed, quality of surrounding air), states (e.g. mood, arousal, blood oxygen levels), and performance (mental and physical).

Everything and everyone will be connected and always communicating; a gigantic Web connecting Mobile users, Marketplaces, and Machines – in real time. A Web that is never fails to get information to its destination at lightning speed and securely.

When I think of IoT, I picture a gigantic freeway system that serves as a means of communication between many different things – machines communicating with other machines (M2M), humans communicating with other humans (P2P), and humans communicating with machines (P2M).

Some like GE have referred to an IoT world as the Industrial Internet, while others like Cisco have coined the term Internet of Everything.

I prefer to call it the “Internet of Many Different Things.” because while unwavering in its form, the Internet must for the first time since its invention accommodate many different types of communications, and do so at unprecedented scale. Some communications will be more sensitive to latency, speed, security, scale, delivery guarantees, and timeliness than others. And the Internet and systems that ride the Internet must have the ability to cope with it all.

In forthcoming blogs, I will explore how KAAZING helps enterprises brings this ability to life – for mobility, marketplaces and machines.

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Kaazing is helping define the future of the event-driven enterprise by accelerating the Web for the Internet of Things.