If you’ve so far withstood the temptation to install a smart speaker in your home, worried about the potential privacy pitfalls and a bit embarrassed about the notion of chatting aimlessly to an inanimate object, brace yourselves. This Christmas, the world’s biggest tech giants, including Amazon, Google and Facebook, are making another bid for your living room, announcing a range of new devices that resemble tablets you can talk to.
“It’s very clear what they’re trying to do: sell you more stuff through third-party use of your own information,”
The fear about whether or not such devices are actually always on causes some users to relegate their smart speakers to corridors. “Think about where in the home you want to use these things, particularly if you think they might be listening all the time,”
I think the only thing missing from the article is a link to Mozilla’s buyers guide, which charts in a friendly consumer fashion whats actually going on underneath the surface of the iot devices we may get over the holiday period.
If you know anything about the kind of work I’ve been researching for R&D. You may know Perceptive Media is big deal in my world and as my motto seems to be, my world is not mainstream yet. However this world crosses over with a couple other areas. Internet of Things, Quantified Self and Object media are a few of the obvious ones, which come to mind.
join us this Wednesday, March 12, as we explore “the story of things” with Alexis Lloyd, the Creative Director of the New York Times’s Research and Development Lab. The “Internet of Things,” has ushered us into an age where physical objects have the potential to talk to us – and each other – in a way that rapidly transforms our most basic understanding of what gadgets are. Llloyd, informed in part by her background designing immersive and exploratory experiences, believes these “enchanted objects” have within them a world of narrative and poetic potential: The R+D lab exists as a laboratory for the staff of the “Grey Lady” to study the implications of these emerging technologies and behaviors on news-media and print. In the hangout she, alongside an audience of industry experts, will explore the storytelling potential of tools and devices as unassuming as a simple bathroom mirror.
The video sums it up well and gets right into the depths of storytelling and the Internet of things. It begs the question, what would objects around you say if they could talk?
Love what Alexis is doing and who knows what might happen in the future? Sure Perceptive Publishing would be right up their avenue? And some of the guys from the NYtimes office came to Hackday and Mashed back in the day… I wonder what they would make of some more of the object things were up to?
I remember ages ago my manager at the time Miles, talking about a scenario where one turned on phone on a flight from another country. Kick starts a virus/worm in another country. This was around the time of Nimda worm which was one of the prolific viruses/worms to date.
Nimda is a computer worm, also a file infector. It quickly spread, surpassing the economic damage caused by previous outbreaks such as Code Red. Nimda utilized several types of propagation technique and this caused it to become the Internet’s most widespread virus/worm within 22 minutes.
Over millennia we humans evolved a powerful and personal instinct — trust — that helps to protect us as we make our way through life. It is a vital tool for survival in the physical world and weaves the fabric of our society. When we are in a relationship based on trust we are less vulnerable, which in turn allows us to collaborate and to be creative. Trust is also context specific — you trust your mechanic to fix your car, but probably not to manage your bank account. This is the principle of “need to know”: in each context only information that is needed for that context is available, and nothing more.
A night of cringeworthy conversations, product demos, and music
But back to the good… This was certainly the year ioT went big and forbes have a nice summary,
Other than Ulta HDTVs, running $20,000 and up, there was no particularly brand new technology announcement that screamed “I am the future” but the sum of the parts screamed “Wow… this Internet thing has opened the door for a generation of products that no one could have imagined.”
If your like me, you may look at something like ioT and wonder what on earth does that stand for? Internet of Things…
From a far it looks like one of those buzz terms like Ajax and Web 2.0 became. Heck you might even find some crappy videos trying to explain what it is from a view.
If you break it down Internet of Things is simply networked physical things or simply NT? So we already know everything will have a IPv6 address in the next decade or so and frankly this is the very start of it. I quite like Dundee’s Jon Rogers (@ileddigital) physical apps and of course the physical apps store.
I’m very sure that networked things will be the next massive growth economy. You won’t be able to buy a thing without it being able to network in some way or another.
Here’s some justification…
The other day I was trying to convince someone that IoT or networked things was going to be the next fronter for developers. I did a bad job trying to explain why she should consider it (although to be fair it was very late in the day for such a dramatic change, I admitted). Although very familiar with makerfaire and the maker audience, I was making the point that its not about that. The languages developers are using will power a good part of the networked things. Yes that means your TV, radio, speakers, pen (dare I say it) Fridge will one day have Python bindings or a RESTful API (hopefully not JSON). Programmers and developers once enjoyed the fact the computer was under their control. Now the real world is up for grabs!
Manchester’s digital scene has for the longest time lived in the shadow of London’s digital scene but something a rumbling and I personally feel the impact of things like Madlab, Fablab, DIYBio, etc, etc… will kickstart companies and startups which hack reality rather than whats on screen. Networked things will be a big part of this. BBC R&D also will be a part of this and we’re already in talks around our unique iot event called playful iot futures… Hope to have much more to say about it soon…
At the moment, anyone from IBM to Bosch is interested in making their products connect to the internet. This will have an impact on marketing only in as much as it will make communicating these emmerging products a real challenge. Youtube, & Vimeo are going to be a big part of the equation because explaining a thing that does something is better done through video. E-commerce and online PR will also lead the way for a really long time as the retail space tries to adjust to hybrid devices. Understanding where a connected lamp like GNL sits in John Lewis is a nightmare. Existing clients who have some new and kooky thing they’ve made might wish to take a leap of faith online before committing their supply chain to these experiments. These are all choices and a world that advertising can help navigate. It’s going to get very exciting.
Shes right and I remember Pyria and Alex’s experiential digital lifestyle store, Digital Wellbeing DWB. Even captured it on video in a fewplaces (really need to port my stuff from Blip.tv to Youtube one day soon).
Those way back might remember I have a massive thing about pipeling born from my love of using Apache Cocoon and XML. Theres actually a very cool XML syntax called Xproc which I’ve yet to really check out in any detail.
I thought about ways to extend Yahoo! Pipes and declared my love for if this then that. But reaching out into the physical world is something else all together…
“Twine is a wireless module tightly integrated with a cloud-based service. The module has WiFi, on-board temperature and vibration sensors, and an expansion connector for other sensors.” Developer John Kestner describes the device and its development. He reviews how it works, what decisions were made in its design, and how It allows you to connect things to the Internet. He also discusses the community that is working to make the product better.
I saw pachube.com a while ago but never really blogged it or thought hard about it. But you can certainly think about how ifttt and pachube could work together really nicely.
The ability to automate and manipulate the physical world is something very special. I’d certainly like to investigate a little deeper in the near future.