Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Stackify Blog, Pat Romanski, Shelly Palmer

Related Topics: Recurring Revenue, Java IoT, Linux Containers, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo, @DXWorldExpo, @ThingsExpo

Recurring Revenue: Article

Big Data's Many Dimensions (IoT)

Urgency, Importance, Frequency, Consequences, Remedy & Cost

It occurred to me, as I'm sure it's occurred to most of you, that driving a car is a classic example of the IoT in action. In this case, my brain is the CPU, and all of my car's gauges are the things. 

I was making a routine 30-minute drive to raid a local vegetable stand. As I processed all the information coming in, I realized there were several dimensions to it. The same principle is at work with IoT projects, no matter what their scale.

One of the classic charts/concepts widely used in information management is determining urgency vs. importance. Urgent & important things are represented in the upper-right quadrant of a square, urgent but not important in the lower right, important but not urgent in the upper left, and that phone call from your old college friend asking for money in the not urgent and not important lower left.

Riding Along in My Automobile
In my car, my speedometer sends me a reading that is urgent and important. My gas gauge reading is not urgent but important, and becomes urgent and important once I start running low. My gearshift is important but not urgent. 

My car has a tachometer but also an automatic transmission, so the tach reading is not urgent and not important. I can go down through the checklist of everything from the odometer, water temp, battery, and oil pressure, to the heating/AC settings, the radio; to the stream of other info and alerts kept by the car's computer.

It's Not That Simple
But this simple classification misses a lot of important stuff. For one thing, as I note above, much of the information changes its nature depending on conditions. Not only am I in trouble if I run out of gas, I'm in big trouble if any of the water, battery, or oil gauges changes. They seldom do, but if they do, they become red-flag urgent and important.


So an IoT monitoring & analytical architecture must take into account the changing, sometimes fluid nature of the dataflows. 

Many Dimensions
It must also take into account frequency, consequences, remedies, and cost. Returning to the gas gauge, I need to look at it infrequently, the consequence is embarrassing but usually not life threatening, the remedy is generally easy, and the cost is not high. The speedometer, on the other hand, must be monitored in real time, whether I ignore it or not.

Should the engine throw a belt and cut my power while driving at night, the consequence is more severe, the remedy more difficult, and the cost higher. Should I ignore a low oil pressure warning, then I'm potentially getting into a dangerous, difficult, very costly situation.

I've had air conditioning systems conk out on me, something for which there is neither a gauge nor an alert. This problem is not urgent or important (as uncomfortable as driving without AC in the heat can be), has little consequence (unless you need to drive people somewhere who may be less tolerant of the heat than you), but can be very difficult and expensive to fix. 

I've also had wheels fall of my car--twice. The first time was when I was 19 years old, driving a decrepit used car, and speeding down the road in the manner of many teenagers who think they're going to live forever. I missed slamming into a bridge by inches, but ended up merely on the side of the road with nobody hurt. I also slowed my driving down forever. 

The second time I was going 5 miles per hour, and thought I had a flat tire. Even at this slow speed, the incident could have had very bad consequences. Losing control of the car is a terrifying thing. This car was not particularly old, but had these supremely annoying aluminum wheels that raise all sorts of Cain with tires and linkages. Again, no gauge here to help me out, but both times I was put in a potentially fatal situation. 

"Gaugeless IoT"
The "gaugeless IoT" of AC & wheel failures exists in many other aspects of driving my car. For example, even though a thermometer courteously tells me how hot or cold it is outside--something I had already nailed down as I was walking out to my car--it doesn't have an anemometer. I have to know and gauge the effect of wind myself. It doesn't let me know about traffic jams ahead, flooding, or perhaps a tornado coming my way. It doesn't warn me of kids on bicycles or dogs or deer darting out in front of me, or big trucks suddenly crowding me. It doesn't predict any of the other thousands of examples of atrocious driving I've encountered with my fellow Americans.

But wait a minute, that's why I have eyes and ears. And memory, my own organic expert system. 

So, So Early
This brings me to my overall point: Even as the IoT will generate trillions of dollars within the global economy very soon, we're still in the very early days. I'm tempted to say that we're only now in Act I of the Information Age. All previous progress has been mere prologue.

There's been a golden quest for decades to smarten computers up by attaching sensors to them. Sure, our wondrous machines have been able to crunch numbers better than us forever, and can perform all manner of brute-force tasks. Today they can even play a nice song or movie at a very high quality. 

But the IoT will bring sensory to our systems in a big way for the first time. They will need to measure all the new incoming data in several dimensions, with built-in decision points that assess remedies and consequences. Even so, it will be decades before IoT applications can "see" and "hear" with anywhere near the ability of people. As always, let's not get too arrogant about the power of our machines, and remember that human beings are sometimes the weak link but sometimes the salvation of the systems we build.

Contact Me on Twitter

More Stories By Roger Strukhoff

Roger Strukhoff (@IoT2040) is Executive Director of the Tau Institute for Global ICT Research, with offices in Illinois and Manila. He is Conference Chair of @CloudExpo & @ThingsExpo, and Editor of SYS-CON Media's CloudComputing BigData & IoT Journals. He holds a BA from Knox College & conducted MBA studies at CSU-East Bay.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
BnkToTheFuture.com is the largest online investment platform for investing in FinTech, Bitcoin and Blockchain companies. We believe the future of finance looks very different from the past and we aim to invest and provide trading opportunities for qualifying investors that want to build a portfolio in the sector in compliance with international financial regulations.
Imagine if you will, a retail floor so densely packed with sensors that they can pick up the movements of insects scurrying across a store aisle. Or a component of a piece of factory equipment so well-instrumented that its digital twin provides resolution down to the micrometer.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settle...
Product connectivity goes hand and hand these days with increased use of personal data. New IoT devices are becoming more personalized than ever before. In his session at 22nd Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, Nicolas Fierro, CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions, will discuss how in order to protect your data and privacy, IoT applications need to embrace Blockchain technology for a new level of product security never before seen - or needed.
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
Nordstrom is transforming the way that they do business and the cloud is the key to enabling speed and hyper personalized customer experiences. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ken Schow, VP of Engineering at Nordstrom, discussed some of the key learnings and common pitfalls of large enterprises moving to the cloud. This includes strategies around choosing a cloud provider(s), architecture, and lessons learned. In addition, he covered some of the best practices for structured team migration an...
No hype cycles or predictions of a gazillion things here. IoT is here. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, an Associate Partner of Analytics, IoT & Cybersecurity at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He also discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data...
Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Raju Shreewastava, founder of Big Data Trunk, provided a fun and simple way to introduce Machine Leaning to anyone and everyone. He solved a machine learning problem and demonstrated an easy way to be able to do machine learning without even coding. Raju Shreewastava is the founder of Big Data Trunk (www.BigDataTrunk.com), a Big Data Training and consulting firm with offices in the United States. He previously led the data warehouse/business intelligence and B...
"IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventi...
When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be...
Smart cities have the potential to change our lives at so many levels for citizens: less pollution, reduced parking obstacles, better health, education and more energy savings. Real-time data streaming and the Internet of Things (IoT) possess the power to turn this vision into a reality. However, most organizations today are building their data infrastructure to focus solely on addressing immediate business needs vs. a platform capable of quickly adapting emerging technologies to address future ...
We are given a desktop platform with Java 8 or Java 9 installed and seek to find a way to deploy high-performance Java applications that use Java 3D and/or Jogl without having to run an installer. We are subject to the constraint that the applications be signed and deployed so that they can be run in a trusted environment (i.e., outside of the sandbox). Further, we seek to do this in a way that does not depend on bundling a JRE with our applications, as this makes downloads and installations rat...
Widespread fragmentation is stalling the growth of the IIoT and making it difficult for partners to work together. The number of software platforms, apps, hardware and connectivity standards is creating paralysis among businesses that are afraid of being locked into a solution. EdgeX Foundry is unifying the community around a common IoT edge framework and an ecosystem of interoperable components.
DX World EXPO, LLC, a Lighthouse Point, Florida-based startup trade show producer and the creator of "DXWorldEXPO® - Digital Transformation Conference & Expo" has announced its executive management team. The team is headed by Levent Selamoglu, who has been named CEO. "Now is the time for a truly global DX event, to bring together the leading minds from the technology world in a conversation about Digital Transformation," he said in making the announcement.
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lead...
Digital Transformation (DX) is not a "one-size-fits all" strategy. Each organization needs to develop its own unique, long-term DX plan. It must do so by realizing that we now live in a data-driven age, and that technologies such as Cloud Computing, Big Data, the IoT, Cognitive Computing, and Blockchain are only tools. In her general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Rebecca Wanta explained how the strategy must focus on DX and include a commitment from top management to create great IT jobs, monitor ...
"Cloud Academy is an enterprise training platform for the cloud, specifically public clouds. We offer guided learning experiences on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud and all the surrounding methodologies and technologies that you need to know and your teams need to know in order to leverage the full benefits of the cloud," explained Alex Brower, VP of Marketing at Cloud Academy, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clar...
The IoT Will Grow: In what might be the most obvious prediction of the decade, the IoT will continue to expand next year, with more and more devices coming online every single day. What isn’t so obvious about this prediction: where that growth will occur. The retail, healthcare, and industrial/supply chain industries will likely see the greatest growth. Forrester Research has predicted the IoT will become “the backbone” of customer value as it continues to grow. It is no surprise that retail is ...