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I'm beginning to think the Internet of Things has jumped the shark...
device
jducoeur
On a semi-regular basis, I get updates from IFTTT (If-This-Then-That, an app that lets you mash stuff up), mostly announcing their new channels. They've gotten pretty eyebrow-raising. Today's is kind of magnificent:

"The GE Appliances Cooking Channel lets your oven communicate with you, no matter where you are."

I'm not quite sure if I find that more creepy or ridiculous, but the real humor comes in the suggested mashups, such as "Post a tweet when dinner is ready", which may set a new bar for Annoying Twitaholism.

The tech industry is talking about The Internet of Things more or less nonstop nowadays, but I'm beginning to get the sense that 98% of it is solutions in search of problems. Which means a shakeout is due in 3... 2... 1...

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The Internet of Things is a next-gen spying apparatus, convincing users to assign ownership to a unique constellation of sensors, permitting intrusive tracking.

Step one: "Hello, you are home, let me turn on the heat"...

"I can't let you do that, Dave."

If only it was just your devices rebelling.

Security officials (and regular police) might just as well pin your life to a dissecting table.

Remember - anything that wants to be part of the Internet of Things has something to say to the Internet, and that means a sensor of some kind is watching. By using the Internet of Things, you are claiming unique association with many of those sensors.

For example: We Can Track You If You Take the Metro: Tracking Metro Riders Using Accelerometers on Smartphones.

Imagine if each room in your home can track you further.

Cory Doctorow gave a great speech on this at Personal Democracy Forum last week.
https://personaldemocracy.com/media/internet-things-do-theyre-told

Good stuff -- both scary and nicely inspiring. Reminds me of why I maintain my EFF membership. (Member #82 -- signed up about an hour after the organization was formed.)

Thanks: this is fine stuff for me to keep in the back of my head. One of the interesting aspects of building Querki is trying to figure out how to be more part of the solution than the problem...

The classic IoT is the netFridge. Sure, it would be great to know when you need to buy eggs or milk, but if you are the sort of person who will always put the eggs in the touch sensor tray and always put the milk on the milk scale, you are also the kind of person to just make a note on your smartphone that you should buy milk and eggs soon. Not to mention the Hard AI problem of recognizing the asparagus and the scallions and noting that the green beans are starting to rot.


Meanwhile there are six shared grocery list apps with real-time updating so you can add ice cream to the list while your partner is heading to the supermarket.


Yes -- including Querki. (Kate's and my Shopping List Space was one of the first ones I wrote. It's not fabulous yet, but I use it most days.)

Actually, the classic Internet of Things these days is precision farming. Using GPS and networked equipment to plant seeds the optimum distance apart and then precision watering to drop the optimum drip of water on each seed, based on soil conditions and other factors.

A lot IoT doesn't need to reach the cloud. But it does need lots of lots of spectrum, which is why I've become so involved in this in my professional life.

Not true! I'm far more likely to put my eggs in the touch sensor tray than I am to notice I'm running out of them and make a list. Admittedly, I'm *weird* organizationally...

It was recently suggested elsewhere that integrating
voice recognition with your smoke alarm would
allow you to say "I'm just cooking here!" to
shut the darned thing off. That would be a
turning point in civilization :-).

Fair. But notably, that one doesn't really require an Internet connection...

Right, but this is why the term IoT is getting broader. A lot of it has to do with simple close range communication and not a lot of backhaul -- but people want the backhaul for remote monitoring or other reasons.

This terrifies me:

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Rheem-Performance-Platinum-40-gal-Tall-12-Year-36-000-BTU-Energy-Star-Ultra-Low-Nox-Natural-Gas-Water-Heater-XG40T12DU36U0/204318413

Now we are getting into areas where a malicious actor can actually change things such that they will cause bodily harm.

The accompanying product: http://www.homedepot.com/p/Rheem-Home-Comfort-WiFi-Module-for-Select-Rheem-Performance-Platinum-Gas-Water-Heaters-REWRA631GWH/205310140

"Wireless control via smartphone from anywhere in the world"

I'll heat water over a fire in the backyard first.

We are probably heading for a shake out as we did with VOIP, "small cell," and any other tech craze.
People get all excited, then it turns out it takes work to make things happen so folks wonder off and then we either get work done or nothing happens.

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