You wake up and the vital functions bracelet sends a signal to the coffee machine to make you your morning cappuccino, then sends another signal to the heater to warm you up to take a shower before you go to work.
You open the fridge and take the breakfast items to find the fridge has added the purchase of eggs and milk to your shopping list automatically, because there aren't many left.
You enjoy your coffee and breakfast while you listen to the relaxing music you love, set by your robotic housekeeper automatically just before you wake up. If you want to turn the volume up a bit, you can do so by issuing a voice command to the robotic housekeeper.
The smart watch in your hand alerts you that you must leave within half an hour so as not to be late for work, so you hurry to get dressed so that the bracelet in your hand opens the garage and starts the car in preparation for your coming.
As soon as you leave the door, unnecessary appliances and lights go out, the house goes into energy-saving mode, and after you get in the car (mostly a self-driving car) it goes off, and the garage door closes automatically when you leave and all the doors are locked.
When it's time for you to come back from work, the TV is turned on to the channel that shows your favorite programme, and the air conditioner is turned on to adjust the temperature to your optimal health condition.
Welcome to the world of the Internet of Things!
We will start with this question how the internet of things changes everything.
The Internet of Things or IOT is that technology that connects everything you use in your life to each other as you can see in this video:
Defining the Internet of things
The acronym IOT is a relatively recent term, introduced only in 1999 by British researcher Kevin Ashton, which was then just a hypothetical term referring to machines communicating with each other.
The term Internet of Things or IOT means the connection of different devices with each other using the Internet, resulting in the transmission and analysis of information so that these devices can process this data, and deal with situations and circumstances around them more intelligently.
We are witnessing this today - in one way or another - starting with the smart watches of Apple and Xiaomi, and even smart lighting that interacts with the presence of the person in the room and lights up or darkens.
The Internet of Things ( IOT ) is like the normal Internet that we use daily, but it connects all the devices together, not just the phone and the computer, so you find that the TV, the refrigerator, the washing machine, the heater, and the car are all connected to each other through the Internet.
It is known that humans interact with the outside world and among themselves through the five known senses. But what if the things we use on a daily basis were given these capabilities through sensors, cameras, and moreover, these devices were connected to the Internet?
In this case, it will not be strange for the car to sense your presence in it, through a camera, for example, so you give a command to turn off the lights in your home (the connection between home lighting and the car is through the Internet).
It would also not be surprising for the car to contact a delivery service company, to find an alternative for you to take you to your home in the event of a malfunction.
The Internet of Things (IOT) makes these devices more conscious, aware and intelligent, but instead of using our five senses and our brains, they use sensors and machine learning to be able to influence and influence the environment around them more effectively.
Through the Internet of Things, you will be able to live a less complex life, as the devices around you handle situations and adjust their tools and functions according to your own time and desire… from the coffee machine to the air conditioning or heating system in your home.
There is no limit here to devices or “things” that we can all connect through IP to have their own unique identification numbers with which you can connect to the Internet.
So we say the Internet of Things and not the Internet of machines or the Internet of devices, because in fact we can connect everything we use to the Internet, even cooking utensils, refrigerator shelves, even roads and trash cans.
The Internet of Things is related to many other technological concepts such as: Big Data, Cloud Storage, Artificial Intelligence, and this is because it is a modern and advanced technology and we will talk about all of these things in the article.
In this article, we will discuss all the information that you should know as a non-specialist about the Internet of Things, internet of things development, how has the internet of things affected business and internet of things in business to be able to deal with and understand this technology, and it will also make it easier for you - if you want - to study seriously specialized in this promising field.
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The history of the Internet of things
It is difficult to track and determine when the Internet of Things (IOT) was found, despite the fact that the term is modern and was mentioned for the first time in 1999 AD by British researcher Kevin Ashton, many applications have preceded this matter, and
I mention the three most important of them:
1. In 1982, scientists at Carnegie Mellon University, who were working on a high floor, connected a Coca-Cola brew machine to the Internet, in order to know if there were Coke cans there and whether they were cold or not.
This, despite its absurdity, shows that the Internet of Things helps humans to overcome the problems they face, which in this case was the landing of the crew and finding hot cans or not finding them at all.
2. In the year 1990, the scientist John Rumke connected the toast bread heating machine to the Internet, and this connection allowed him to turn it on or off using the Internet.
3. In 1998, a person linked the rising stream of water in his fountain to the share price of what he owns, in order to see through it the rise or fall of the value of this share.
Although these histories and applications are remembered as luminous signs in the history of technology, However, the most prominent and important date is the year 2008, which scientists believe is the birth date of the Internet of Things, and this is due to the fact that the year 2008 is the year in which the number of people and the number of devices connected to the Internet for the first time in history.
Humanity will not stop there, as it is expected that the number of devices connected to the Internet will increase to reach 75 billion devices in the year 2025, and who knows what will happen after this, especially as we are in the era of the information revolution and Big Data.
How does the Internet of things work (internet of things explained)
How IoT devices work is very easy and simple in theory, it is about collecting data and then transmitting it through the network, and then reviewing, interacting with it and displaying it in an easy and simple user interface.
And we will talk in more detail about the stages of its work:
The first stage: collecting data from devices and sensors
At this stage, the devices or sensors built into them collect data from the environment around them, and this data may vary according to the type of these sensors, as there is a wide variety of sensors, whether for temperature, sound, light, pressure and humidity sensors…. etc.
It is possible to count your mobile phone among these devices, it also has a number of sensors that are able to collect, distinguish and transmit data, but usually IoT devices are more specialized and focused than your mobile phone.
The output of this process can be very different, it may be complex or simple, it may be just numbers showing temperatures or atmospheric pressure, it may be pictures or videos as needed.
The second stage: connecting devices to each other
All data collected through devices and information is transmitted over the Internet to the electronic cloud, which stores, processes and organizes its transmission to other devices according to a specific protocol.
This stage is considered the most important stage because it affects the rest of the stages, and affects the safety of the process and the efficiency and effectiveness of the Internet of Things. It's also the reason for the two biggest criticisms of the Internet of Things; They are the possibility of being hacked, and the complexity of the communication process between devices and each other.
The third stage: data processing
At this stage, the data collected by the sensors is processed and stored by the cloud, and this is the effective step through which the machine or device understands the meaning of this data.
This stage is also the stage that determines how smart these devices are, as the more intelligent advanced technologies such as Machine Learning, Deep Learning, and Artificial Neural Networks are used, the smarter they are, and the more successfully they are able to perceive the environment around them.
Fourth stage: interaction and user interface
At this point the data and output are converted into a form that can be evaluated and understood by the user; Whether this method is through an application or through text messages, alerts, or others.
In many cases, this user interface will not only tell the person what you have done or will do, but will also show them the data and make them choose from among several options.
In order to facilitate these four stages we can apply them through IoT tools that farmers use on modern farms.
As there are smart sensors in the cultivated land that measure the dryness of the soil. These sensors send the data they collect every 6 hours to the cloud to be stored by the latter. This data usually expresses the condition of the soil, whether it is irrigated or not.
After storing this data in the cloud, an algorithm or an artificial neural network analyzes it to come up with a conclusion whether the soil needs or does not need to be watered.
Then it sends the results to an application on the user’s phone that informs him of the result, and he chooses whether to water those plants or not. If this farmer chooses to water the land, several of the Internet of Things devices located in the ground and connected to a water source irrigate these plants immediately.
Internet of Things Components
1. Anything (for example, a home appliance) that has advanced features and capabilities
Like a car, for example, that has a mechanical and structural ability that is capable of carrying out the required tasks, such as opening doors automatically, or windows designed with structural and mechanical capabilities so that they can be closed automatically.
It is worth noting that the world of the Internet of Things can extend to anything and any device as long as this thing or this device has the characteristics and capabilities that allow it to be integrated into the world of the Internet of Things.
2. Advanced sensors and cameras capable of receiving accurate data
A very important part of the world of the Internet of Things is based on receiving data, in order to analyze it and then come up with results or outputs that ultimately improve the user's life or save his time.
Therefore, there must be devices and tools capable of receiving this data in order to send it to the analysis, such as temperature, visual and audio data, detection and scanning of spatial dimensions…etc.
This also includes smart chips capable of receiving data through touch.
3- Giving the thing access to the Internet
This is divided into two parts:
The first part: Small smart devices that can technically play the role of a computer.
It is worth noting that there is now more than one company on the scene that manufactures and sells this type of device, led by a company called Arduino
The second part: it is the connection to the Internet according to the IP address protocol, and for those who do not know the IP protocol, it is an address given to each device connected to the Internet.
This is very, very important in the world of networks, because it is the means or tool on which the path of data between devices connected to the Internet and each other is based.
4. Programming and special applications to control and manage things through the Internet
We have the thing and it has sensors and cameras (smart technology), and now we have the ability to connect to the Internet. In order to complete the episode, there must be a Software or Application. The function of the program here is to control and manage, to set and organize the commands of this device, and how it interacts with other devices.
Of course, these applications work according to complex programming interspersed with artificial intelligence.
It is worth mentioning here that the Arduino company mentioned above, as well as a pioneer in the Internet of Things industry in terms of hardware, is also a pioneer in the field of software for the Internet of Things.
At the end of this point, I would like to point out an important thing, which is that, in order to start using IoT technology, you do not have to have a complete system for your home, work and health system, but you can use this technology in minimal limits as well and at a relatively low cost.
For example, there are now internet-enabled door locks that you can buy and install in your home, and there is an application downloaded to your mobile phone that is like a key or control unit for the lock.
You can open the door of your house to one of your friends while you are on your way home, for example, and you can also share the possibility of opening the door, with whoever you want from your friends and family.
And the great thing here is that at any time later, you can add a new IoT device and link it to your home lock, and so on until you build your entire IoT network.
Internet of things uses
The Internet of Things (IOT) technology can be used in almost all fields; Any field that uses tools and devices - all fields - can introduce this technology, and therefore there are hundreds and thousands of areas in which the Internet of things is used, and on top of them:
1. Health field
The field of medicine and health care has gained great popularity for the Internet of Things technology, because through it you can provide higher quality and efficient health care, whether for patients or the infirm, and among the most famous examples of this are smart watches that measure blood pressure, heart rate and sleep pattern of individuals.
Indeed, these smart watches have contributed to saving a large number of lives over the past years, because they can call an ambulance when sensing a medical emergency to the wearer.
There are more advanced tools now used in hospitals such as insulin pumps and heart monitors that can monitor a person's health status and intervene at the right time to save him or improve his life.
In hospitals, the Internet of Things (IOT) technology also helps to connect all health devices to each other, which allows to facilitate the process of patient follow-up, and rapid intervention, especially if the patient is in the intensive care room or the like.
2. The field of home appliances and smart homes
It is not possible to talk about the Internet of Things (IOT) without talking about smart homes, and the use of these modern technologies in automating traditional household tasks or at least monitoring the conditions of the house and all the tools inside it.
Perhaps one of the most famous ideas and perceptions about the Internet of Things is that it is a way to connect all home appliances and machines with a single network and an intelligent mind - as we saw in the video above.
In addition to these traditional and well-known benefits, the Internet of Things also helps to save and rationalize energy consumption by monitoring the work of devices, lights, air conditioners, and others.
3. The field of transportation and communications
Imagine with me smart roads, smart cars and smart parking places, well this is the dream and main goal of IOT technology in the field of transportation and transportation.
This technology aims to reduce or reduce road accidents, in addition to making car journeys faster, more efficient and, of course, safer.
And not only that, but through the Internet of Things, the latest means of delivery have been reached, which are drones or drones that can photograph or transport packages or meals.
4. Industry and agriculture fields
IoT applications in agriculture
Various industries have received tremendous developments thanks to the technology of the Internet of Things (IOT), where the factory has become fully automated by linking manufacturing machines and machines to each other, and placing the human being as an observer only.
In the field of agriculture, using Internet of Things technology, you can easily grow plants in your home by creating a micro-climate that suits the needs of your young plants.
The Internet of Things (IOT) has much more utility in large-scale agriculture; Where it can help farmers in following up on changes that occur in the soil and plants, such as drying out or changing its components and increasing its acidity or baseness, and this will help farmers to intervene quickly and find solutions as soon as possible.
And all of this is just the tip of the iceberg of what IoT is doing and will do in the future.
Advantages and disadvantages of the Internet of things
First, the advantages of the Internet of things
A powerful technology like the Internet of Things (IOT) has hundreds of features that can improve our lives, the most important of which are:
1. Automate everything that can be automated
IoT technology will help us to make all periodic and routine tasks without our interference and without any errors, and this will provide a comfortable lifestyle for humans, and will help individuals to become more productive.
2. Save a lot of time
The use of Internet of Things technology will help humanity save billions of hours daily without any exaggeration, by automating all routine tasks that humans usually perform, which will help us humans to focus on important things or allocate free time for rest or enjoyment.
for example; How many hours are wasted per month to open and lock your car garage? With the Internet of Things, tasks like this will be performed automatically, pre-set to save you hours of time every month.
3. Reduce our energy consumption
By monitoring and controlling all tools and devices, whether home or others, it will be possible to save huge amounts of energy, especially those related to lighting or human neglect, and in addition to reducing our energy consumption, it will also contribute to a reasonable reduction of expenses and reduction of waste.
4. Reducing accidents and health problems
By using the Internet of Things (IOT) technology in the transportation and health sector, the life expectancy of people will increase, and the death rates from accidents and health problems will decrease significantly.
5. Save a lot of data
Data is the oil of the twenty-first century, so just providing data will contribute to creating a very strong wave of improvement and development, whether in terms of services or products, in addition to helping to customize each individual according to his behavior, activities and habits.
6. Safety and protection
Having everything monitored will give us a sense of security, and it will greatly reduce the incidence of crime or even eliminate it completely… except of course electronic ones. And safety here means not only safety from harm and crimes but also safety and protection from accidents and dangers.
Secondly, the disadvantages of the Internet of things
Just as the Internet of Things technology has many advantages, it also has a large number of defects, some of which are considered - in the opinion of specialists - fatal flaws if they are not realized and dealt with, and these defects are:
1. Lack of privacy
With all these devices that monitor, measure and control the environment in which we live it will become very difficult to maintain privacy and security, everything is monitored and recorded in boring detail.
2. Human nature has changed
Excessive dealing with this technology may lead to radical changes in human nature in terms of behavior and psychological aspects, and human behavior will change according to the development of this technology.
Psychologists and behaviorists expect that a person will become emotionally cold, and gradually lose the ability to feel others as a result of prolonged interaction with the machine... which will lead him to a state of emotional dullness.
Besides this, the frequent use of these machines will also lead to a complete dependence on them, losing some of the skills that we consider essential today, and leaving these tasks to the machine to take over completely, which will mean that we will be unable to perform them in the event of a machine failure.
3. Hacking and data theft
One of the most serious problems facing the Internet of Things is that it is vulnerable to hacking or data theft, which will cost the person heavy losses, and will leak very accurate information.
This accurate information makes it as if this hacker penetrated the human psyche and not only the device, but another technology that may save us from this predicament which is the Blockchain technology.
4. Millions of jobs lost
Mass use of the Internet of Things will cause millions of people to lose their jobs with huge and complex economic impacts, but fortunately economists tell us that it will also create millions more jobs.
The complexity of the IoT makes it difficult to deal with errors or vulnerabilities, which can make a single vulnerability fatal, and the process of building and maintaining IoT systems will be very difficult from a technical point of view.
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Challenges facing the Internet of things
Despite the progress and progress that we will gain when developing and deploying IOT technology in our little blue planet, there are a number of challenges and obstacles that make our task somewhat difficult.
We can summarize these obstacles in only 6 points, namely:
1. The great complexity of IoT systems and environments
Experts divide the Internet of Things environment into four basic components:
1. Equipment: It is the physical component of the Internet of Things. It consists of sensors, micro devices, and networks.
2. Software: It is the intangible part that is concerned with storing and then processing data coming from the equipment. It consists of applications, cloud services, platforms, telecom operators and networks.
3. Services and Operations: They are outputs that deal with data and conditions controlled by the Internet of Things, which are data analysis and integration between the different parts, along with cybersecurity, technical and administrative services.
4. Laws: The legislation that governs the cooperation between these different parts of the Internet of Things environment, and it consists of standards, protocols, alliances, industry groups, legislators, and governments.
As you have noticed, there is a lot of complexity resulting from the need for effective coordination between a large number of parties...whether in terms of service providers, governments, legislators, as well as users.
Especially since there are many continuous changes and updates in this environment, which requires the existence of this effective coordination between the parties, whether to improve the service or to realize crises or even maintenance.
2. Advanced infrastructure
The comprehensive or effective implementation of the Internet of Things (IOT) technology requires the availability of a sophisticated infrastructure capable of accommodating the requirements of this technology.
This is so that the infrastructure can provide capabilities that allow all these devices to communicate with each other, in addition to controlling and being able to deal with the large amount of information flowing to and from IoT devices.
3. Information and systems security
One of the big challenges facing the Internet of Things is cyber security or the security of information and systems, because these devices will control many important aspects of our lives and will have a role in the health and industry sectors … which will make the least problem or error very expensive.
The science of cybersecurity is now being combined with the Internet of Things (IOT), with the aim of preventing any external harm from infecting these devices, controlling them, or even accessing the information they store… just as it happens with our computers and mobile phones.
4. Impact of the Internet of Things on Human Society (Social Impact)
The Internet of Things is an important factor of the fourth industrial revolution that will change many aspects of our lives forever, which will affect the acceptance of this technology by human society.
for example; This digital transformation will lead to the loss and disappearance of millions of jobs forever, and this will lead to economic consequences such as those experienced in previous industrial revolutions.
Experts say that just as the Internet of Things will lead to the loss of millions of jobs, it will also lead to the creation of millions of different jobs, but this will require those who have lost their jobs to learn new skills that are needed in the labor markets.
Speaking about the new professions and skills that are in demand, the specialists say that certain specializations are thriving in the age of the Internet of Things.
These specializations or fields are:
- The science of data analysis.
- Artificial Intelligence.
- Cyber Security.
- UX & UI Design
- Mobile Application Programming Mobile Development.
- Electronics Engineering Hardware Engineering.
- Networking Engineering.
5. Compatibility between different systems and platforms
The presence of many systems and institutions on which IoT technology operates will make it difficult - at first - to achieve the required integration and reliability, but specialists are likely to integrate companies or create a common environment among them in the near future.
This is important because it is exposed to a very important part of the Internet of Things, which is the communication of all devices with each other and working side by side.
6. Various legislation and laws required
The last major challenge facing us is the need for legislation and laws regulating the manufacture and use of this important technology, and this issue in particular poses a dilemma for decision-makers and legislators, Especially since they have to invent laws for something they do not know and do not realize all its aspects until now.
Everything new that is discovered is a link in the path of our evolution as human beings, perhaps this is an evolution in the direction of prosperity and prosperity, or an evolution in a way that made us mere inhuman machines... The result here depends on the nature of our use of this thing.
Also, each person individually can, by using it, make something useful or harmful, but of course this will not prevent me from always sharing everything new with you, you deserve to know.