Its not everyday that I find myself absorbed in a comic book. That was until The Danish Alexandra Institute, a non-profit that conducts application-oriented IT research, created a pictorial storytelling of 25 Internet of Things concepts – definitely not your average superhero comic book.
The beautifully interesting publication breaks down twenty-five usually complex IOT concepts with engaging images, simple text and fifteen application scenarios. If you’re not familiar with the “Internet of Things,” you can read my overview of the concept here.
The orginal eComic Book is available here and every word is worth reading (seriously), but there were a few interesting concepts that jumped out at me that are worth discussing. IOT’s potential impact goes far beyond the 25 concepts mentioned in the comic book, but four applications intrigued me the most.
The eBook describes how Interactive Street Sensing will be able to provide city planners with comprehensive data about the city, enabling them to make more informed decisions. For example, lamposts will be outfitted with sensors that can provide data about traffic, noise environment and temperature – really any factor that could provide a better understanding of the environment. The sensor’s data could then be transmitted, processed and presented into realtime dynamic infographics like a real-time map of a city’s pollution compared to the past. IOT could help city planners be able to treat the city as a dynamic organism rather than a one-dimensional map.
HealthCare For The Elderly
One of the most interesting applications the authors present is the potential application of IOT for improving the quality of life for the elderly. One example described is the potential for body sensor networks to reveal when a person has experienced a dangerous fall and alert family memebers, emergency units or nursing staff within seconds – talk about an upgrade to LifeAlert! This technology could also be applied to people who suffer from early stage alzheimers disease. Sensor applications allow the individual to live autonomously by enabling his family to monitor his whereabouts and mental condition in realtime. Overall IOT has the potential to improve the quality of life for elderly people by helping them live more autonomously and self-determined.
An essential element of the Internet of Things is the ability for the ‘things’ to be equipped with event detection and interpretation capabilities. This could revolutionize emergency response systems by enabling ‘things’ to report emergencies like cars or buildings. For instance, instead of waiting for the victims or bystanders of a car crash to report the event to authorities, the cars themselves report the crash to the emergency services with important details like number of passengers, the force of impact, location etc.
IOT could outfit farmers with detailed realtime weather forecasts, crop and soil conditions, duration and level of sunlight,humidity, level of rainfall and wind speed for each plot of land. The application may seem small for us city folk but for farmers with fields that are are geographically dispersed it would be revolutionary. IOT’s potential farming applications go beyond just forecasting a crops environment; a farm equipped with IOT sensors could monitor, track and alert farmers to status of the crops themselves. Farmers could access in realtime the state of every one of their their plants: size, humidity in the ground, ripeness of the fruits (size, colour, sugar level)etc.
Mind blown yet? Make sure to read the original here for more IOT goodness.