In the past years we've published several articles on the so-called Internet of Things. In February 2010 we claimed Pachube to be one of the first initiatives to make the Internet of Things more concrete by making it easier to make use of it.
Meanwhile, Pachube’s open source project has been renamed into Cosm, and has more power to connect and build the Internet of Things today. Cosm shows a clear example of how their software application could be used, including a virtual dashboard with switches, buttons and keys to take control over ‘the things’. (Click here for a working example.)
Cosm competitor Open.sen.se prefers to use the term ‘Internet of Everything’, referring to their believe in an “Internet of Everything where Humans, Nature, Machines, Objects, Environments, Information, Physical and Virtual spaces all mix up, talk, intertwine, interact, enrich and empower each other in all sorts of ways”. At the moment, Sen.se is in a phase of prototyping and testing its products.
The services mentioned above are still the domain of nerds. SmartThings could be one of the first projects to bring the IoT to the people. Although controlling your ‘things’ is still done online or by using an app, the tangible part of this product are the hub and its connected chips on your physical objects. No more hassle with micro-controllers, but a good-looking piece of electronics. That’s where stuff starts to become really interesting.
Is your front door closed? Your pet runs out of your yard? Afraid of basement flooding? SmartThings is able to notify you through its SmartApps, and enables you to take control, warn a plumber, or check out where your dog is hanging out. SmartThings recently became a hot thing on Kickstarter where it raised over $1,000,000. The initiators are currently developing the very first device.
The Internet of Things is increasingly becoming an Internet of Tangible Things. And very probably, this will not be the last article presenting initiatives to make the Internet of Things more concrete, since we still have a long time to go.