Chances are, if you are not thinking about the IoT, its because you hadn’t yet heard the term. However I can tell you the IoT has already entered your life. In-fact, over the next few years, its integration with your daily life will continue until your life is completely immersed, or is that enmeshed with this technology.
What is the IoT?
The IoT is the “ Internet of Things” it is the ever increasing number of Internet enabled gadgets and devices in your life. It started with your computer, then your smart phone and now it is all the gadgets that connect devices to each other and to the internet, such as any home automation device, like Chrome cast on your TV, or any personal smart device, like a fitness tracker.
To illustrate how quickly this technology is developing, its interesting to note that the term ‘IoT’ is already considered obsolete by those who are working close to the leading edge of this technology. , The term IoT was replaced by the term IoE (the Internet of Everything). This term was then quickly replaced by the term “ nearables.”
What is the definition of Nearables?
According to Wikipedia, the definition of nearables is the following:
Any object (or a live being, like a human or animal) can become a nearable after a wireless, electronic sensor is attached to it and starts broadcasting data to nearby mobile devices. Due to continued miniaturization of sensor technology, a single transmitter could be equipped with a whole set of these.
In the second interpretation the actual nearable devices can be part of an infinite array of smart interconnected objects, programmed to improve an individual's vicinity in every way, usually to be used in a smart home environment. Making today's homes smart by having nearable technologies creating these devices to act intuitively depending on the needs of individuals through self-learning software.
What impact will nearabIes have?
Well, I can see a day soon where nearables will replace your GP.
You will soon wear a device that measures your blood pressure and temperature. It will take blood samples and prescribe medicine, which will then be delivered to you from an online pharmacy, probably by a drone, to your tracked location, within a very short timeframe.
It will trigger health alerts such as the onset of stroke or heart attack, it will recommend if you should do a breathing exercise, or a meditation, or sleep and more.
With this sort of feedback, we will live longer, healthier and happier lives.
We will project ourselves using holographic video technology
Our homes will be protected by 24-hour security monitoring, with motion sensors sending live video feeds to our smart devices.
Whilst at work or away, we will interact with our pets, children, significant others, (or even unwelcome home invaders) through smart devices in our home, which will deliver us into these spaces via holographic video (3 dimensional video)
Our pets will be wired to smart devices to improve communication
Yes…the obsession with “ fur family” will only deepen –and infact, we might learn some surprising things about our finned, furred and feathered friends as a result.
Whilst some of these developments may be a few years off, these and more will certainly all occur within this generations lifetime. It will make for some fascinating opportunities and some concerning risks.
But the Internet of Things is more than just about home automation and personal devices
This change in technology will see regional towns and rural communities go through a renaissance that will reverse the trend of net migration from regional to city areas. With the Io
Farming will be changed forever.
Farmers gave up the horse for the combustion engine and productivity increased 10 fold. Soon they will give up the combustion engine for a laptop, drones, and nearable devices attached to their livestock, water, feed and soil – when they do, productivity will go through the roof.
Drones will run boundary checks on fencing, monitor soil and water quality, prescribe and deliver nutrients and even identify and poison weeds.
Livestock will wear devices that track their location, movement and health. All feedback will be sent to a laptop –and this will means farmers will start to manage their farm by exception, not by the manual inputs of time and miles covered.
As farming changes, Farmers will change. People will technical ability, but limited or no farming experience will move to farming as a lifestyle choice. This will radically change regional areas.
Regional Areas will go through a renaissance
Cities boomed because that is where the jobs were. But cities today are overcrowded, stressful and can negatively impact health and wellness as a result.
If the choice could be to live anywhere, but earn the same money you earned for your city based job, but without all the inconvenience of city commuting and higher city based living costs, would you move?
The chances are, if you have a young family, yes, you will.
Once you see that you can live in a town where everything is 5-10 minutes away, where there are no crowds, and where you are really connected to a community and can comfortably achieve a superior work life balance, and then decision to move will be easy.
And it is the ‘Internet of Things’ that will make this transition seamless for so many.
Postscript: There are also significant risks to be aware of as the IoT unfolds. In particular in regards to personal security and privacy issues. I will explore that topic in a future article.