IoT = Internet of Things.
Its whats been consuming my life of late.
Ever since Google bought the company that made the Nest thermostat for a few billion smackers, its been exploding all over the press and leaking out of tech companies at an astonishing rate.
(In fact, its been around longer than that, much much longer, but for a clear start to the story, this will do).

Thats nice Ben, what in the world are you talking about?
Yeah, see, there, right there is the core issue….
What exactly is the Internet of Things?

We all are pretty comfortable with the Internet. For most of us, its about web pages and email.
Facebook and gmail ‘run’ over the Internet, Instagram photos are ‘on’ the Internet.
Connected computers, I think we are all pretty comfortable with that.

A few geeks and nerds know that the Internet is a series of pipes. Pipes that can carry lots of different services, or messages.
Take for example your banking. You interface it via a web page, but your bank shuffles around money using those pipes, and they don’t use web pages, they send data and the Internet carries it. Happily.

You all know that I work in automation. I can (and do) use the Internet pipes to carry, say, temperature data from one point to another. Room temperatures, computer temperatures, water temperatures etc. It matters not what the data is, just that it is structured in a way that I can stick it in one end of a pipe and pull it out in a recognisable form from the other end.

Here then is where we get close to IoT.
We have the Internet and we have things.
Things can be anything that uses the right data format. Thats all that matters. The data format. What the thing is matters not.

So, thus we end up with companies like Nest. They made a thermostat for your home heating/AC. You pull your perfectly good thermostat off the wall and install theirs (for around 250 bucks). It joins your home Wifi network, and thus hops into the first pipe of its Internet joyride.
Suddenly your home room temperature can pop up all over the place, your phone, your iPad, your computer, lots of places.
You have a thing, your room temperature, on the Internet.

Do we even want to imagine an Internet of Things?

Who really cares about a room temperature on an Android smartphone?
What’s any of this got to do with you?

Yeah. That and more……