Internet of Things – Advantage or Disadvantage?

The Internet of Things, or IoT, is a sweeping trend of technology that is created to automate or improve our quality of life. This is achieved by having machines or computers talk to each other by means of a network. This network requires little to no human-to-computer or human-to-human interaction. This could mean setting your furnace to automatically turn to 72 degrees at a certain time, or it could mean your refrigerator letting you know when you are low on milk. Some could argue that computers are taking over the world, where others will enjoy the fruits of the automation labor.

There are factors that come into play when deciding what, how and how much you would want to use IoT. Some of these factors could include whether or not it helps cut costs as a business owner, understanding the intricacies to the code if you understand the language, or just trying to make your day a little more enjoyable.

More devices built with IoT

Over the course of the past twenty years, more and more devices come with networking technology. Using networks, a television set can talk to a computer. A DVR set-top box can talk to your cell phone. It could even accomplish menial tasks that might otherwise eat up a portion of your time.

Suppose you are a dishwasher at a restaurant. You have to manually load the dish trays, push them into the washer, add the soap and set the timers. Technology and Automation could do all of that for you if programmed correctly. So in our example let’s introduce IoT to the dishwasher. It is networked or has access to the internet. You download the dishwasher app to your phone, and even from halfway across the planet, you could tell your dish washer you want to add more soap or it can alert you if components break down.

IoT Programming

Being a programmer of this technology is no easy task. Some devices run on an Android platform, others run within IOS, or even windows. To get different operating systems to talk to each other, you need a common programming language. This is known as a DevKit or a development kit. This software is usually given out by the manufacturer of the operating system, or sometimes a 3rd party program come into play such as Python, or C++. Schooling is almost always required if you ever plan on writing code, but sometimes learning it can be done off of YouTube videos and Google searches. There are videos that have been provided by Harvard that will help you learn Java, but you have no two way communication with the instructors or professors. Software programmers can make anywhere between $60,000 and $120,000 a year, depending on knowledge and experience.

Advantages to Quality of Life

IoT has advantages in increasing our quality of life. Many of our daily tasks can be completed with next to little or no input from us on a consistent basis. An app on your cell phone could tell a car to always start heating up 10 minutes prior to leaving on a set schedule. Coming home to a cold house isn’t always pleasant. By using IoT we are able to tell our homes to warm up to a certain temperature before we arrive. Maybe you planned for a trip and are going to be away for an extended period of time. Did you forget to turn off the oven? Is the refrigerator door open? IoT allows us to see these things, given they have the technology available within them.

There are many reasons to have IoT technology in our lives. Perhaps we want to improve our lives, increase productivity at work, or maybe just have a little piece of mind. There are flaws to the technology. Maybe our computer crashes, or we lose the network connection, and even hackers try to access your information. This is still a relatively new technology, and it’s far from being perfect. But as time goes on, we continue to innovate to ensure a stable connection to our devices. We creating passwords to lock our sensitive information and write out bugs in our software to stop crashes. Technology can be scary with everything it can do, but in today’s world, the rewards outweigh the risks.