The Internet-of-Things and the relevance of data

I attended the Second IEEE WoWMoM Workshop on the Internet of Things: Smart Objects and Services, which took place last week, on June 4th, in Madrid. The workshop opened with a keynote speech about SmartSantander, a Smart City project that successfully deployed a pilot consisting on different services in the city of Santander, Spain. The main takeaway of the presentation was the big challenge related to the integration of diverse data sources, ontologies and semantics. Such remarks set the trend of the workshop, where data management and aggregation were widely discussed. An interesting work was presented by Bob Ran from TNO, “Virtual Object Access Rights to Enable Multi-Party Use of Sensors” regarding the integration of different Sensors and Actuator Networks (SAN) and the possibility to buy data from already deployed networks instead of duplicating the sensing infrastructure.

The main purpose of the visit was to present our findings in “The M2M Promise, What Could Make it Happen? A Techno-economic Analysis” where we conclude that the proliferation of M2M solutions is not facing technical limitations; instead, solutions and services are largely hampered due to the uncertainty in the generation of value for major players involved in the study. Our message was well accepted, even though we target a highly technical audience, and interesting discussions where held during the remaining conference days.

The day after the workshops opened with a keynote by Mischa Dohler, where many of our findings were reinforced with his experience in trying to get M2M into de real world, not as pilot projects, but as actual services. Strong remarks fell again into the significance of data; how the obsession for privacy and security is only creating barriers in the information sharing, without the proper creation of intelligent data filters. During the presentation it was pointed out that before the huge information exchange takes place, efforts should be focused on M2M solutions that solves issues and gives revenues in the short term, which is exactly the same message that our study conveys.

The feeling after attending to the conference is that data science will only gain more relevance in the upcoming years and it will become a centerpiece of the Internet of things.

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