Let the adventure begin

The idea behind this blog is to document my progress of getting familiar with Internet of Things from the ‘thing’ perspective: low-level details of electronic devices, their connectivity, types of power supply and other aspects and challenges.

For the last two and a half years I have been working for a company providing software solutions for telcos. Most issues related to large scale device management have already been resolved these days. For example, many home gateways and IP phones available on the market implement the TR-069 protocol, which is widely used by service providers for remote configuration, backup and monitoring end-users’ appliances. Databases are scalable and, by adding load-balancing and virtualisation to applications running on the server side, everyone can benefit from high availability of delivered solutions nowadays.

IoT market, on the other hand, is currently in the development phase. From IT perspective, protocols suitable for Internet of Things have been specified for a fairly long time. The popular MQTT protocol was published in 1999 and the first version of OMA Lightweight M2M (LwM2M) was approved in February 2017. It seems that there is no technical obstacle standing in the way of increasing the number of devices being deployed.

For some reasons, IoT devices featuring open protocols are not widely available yet. Prototyping kits (like Arduino, Raspberry Pi, MangOH) provide enthusiasts and hobbyists with tools making development of arbitrary DIY projects really easy. However, a complete device still cannot be bought by an ordinary man. My intuition tells me that it is only a matter of time to see a growing number of production-ready devices soon.

My personal long-term goal is to learn and verify how hard it is to harness the existing technology to create intuitive, attractive and yet functional devices, assuming that interoperability with most popular IoT platforms is crucial. While collecting customers’ requirements, looking for their use cases and business drivers are all important, I want to also learn about the IoT from the bottom up.