Internet of Personal Things
Relying on communication between things to improve cities.
Of the many perspectives from which to approach the evolution of IoT, the relationship between IoT and Smart Cities is fascinating.
Smart Cities are inseparable from IoT development.
For example, the traffic in London or Paris would be virtually impossible to manage today without IoT.
Without IoT, there will be no SMART. We should assume that we are talking about SMARioT Cities.
But let’s go one step further. Let’s move from Smart Cities to Smart Countries. Today, it would be very difficult for, for example, the Directorate General of Public Works and Water Management of the Netherlands to manage its vast network of dams, mills, locks, generators and canals without the IoT Network that they have developed in recent years. It is not something that can be considered.
What is questionable is which actions associated with analysing the data generated by this IoT Network trigger automatic decisions executed without human supervision and which actions require human assessment, judgment and, ultimately, validation. The growing adoption of IoT poses apparent advantages as well as potential risks.
Therefore, the central issue is not the adoption or non-adoption of IoT. The time has passed to consider whether or not it is worth taking risks (if anything, more than we have already taken). This is not even the time to question what level of operations are processed or how many devices are connected.
The central question is what kind of decisions we allow to be made, derived from IoT activity, automatically without human oversight. The balance between the benefits and risks of IoT depends on whether the focus is on optimizing functions, processes, and costs or the focus is on improving people’s quality of life. Because the type of cities and society we will have in the years to come will depend on this approach.
That is the essence of IoT, people. And if we don’t lose the humanistic approach, then the technology behind the IoT will be a great ally to turn Smart cities into Sensible cities.
Because, as MIT states in its sensible city lab, the city in real-time is actual! As layers of networks and digital information cover the urban space, new approaches to studying the built environment, mobility and urbanism are emerging.
How we describe and understand cities is being radically transformed, as are the tools we use to design them. The Senseable City Laboratory is a research initiative at MIT whose mission is to anticipate changes and study them from a critical point of view.
As this and other projects develop, we can already sense how the relationships between people and cities are changing. Under these lines, you can see a 3D map of Tokyo with the real-time dynamics of its public transport network. In addition to being a somewhat hypnotic sight, it is fascinating to follow a large city’s traffic in real-time and with layers of additional information that the user can activate or deactivate.
IoT and Smart cities, as we said at the beginning of this article, are inseparable.
IoT is synonymous with progress. And that’s what it’s all about. To advance.
We are not afraid of technology, and we fear taking steps that make us dependent on technology and unable to turn back.
One of the most exciting and disturbing lines of evolution in the Supply Chain points toward what Randy Bradley calls a “Touchless Supply Chain”.
The interconnection of Cloud Computing, IoT, AI, and Blockchain opens frontiers towards a Supply Chain with a level of automation and intelligence that progressively reduces human intervention.
Craig Wentworth makes an interesting radiography of what may be the next generation of Supply chains, the Smart Supply Chain, along the lines of the “Touchless Supply Chain” enunciated by Randy Bradley.
The disruption lies in placing people rather than goods at the centre of the process.
When we place people at the centre, the Supply Chain opens up new points of connection with devices that, until now, had no presence. The most significant examples are voice picking and wearable logistics.
Imagine our voice assistants (Alexa, Siri…) can place orders, either following our instructions or interpreting our conversations. They can change delivery dates and product characteristics, cancel orders or suggest changes…
Imagine, moreover, that the data collected by our biometric wristbands are transmitted to various “trust centres” and, with this data, orders for food, medicines, clothing… can be generated.
Let’s imagine combining our voice assistants and Wearables gives rise to a new “Super Personal Assistant” interface with the Supply Chain associated with our recurring purchases, our supermarket, pharmacy, and clothing store. Let’s imagine what Amazon can become if we keep imagining…
The significant disruption of IoT in the supply chain comes from the personal perspective, leaving the industrial perspective in the background.
The challenge of ensuring the security, privacy and inviolability of data is gigantic. Technologically, we are several steps ahead of what our sense of security allows us to accept for the moment. The automation of supply chains is forcing us to rethink the relationship that people will have with things.
But we are also about to open a door that gives access to our lives to a new IoT generation. A new IoT that no longer works for us but works with us.
We are already on the road that leads from IoT to the IoPT, Internet of Personal Things.