back to article Freescale: Cloudy dumb sensors? Nope, not OUR smart Internet of Things

Wearable devices are great examples of accessible stuff within the Internet of Things, but on the whole they’re pretty dumb sensors. Typically, they use Bluetooth to crank out information to a mobile or similar gadget, which relays the data for processing in the cloud and then back to a web interface. Wearables are clever, but …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    "If you think about home automation, a lot of those individual applications have been around for years ......" he said "You know about the security side........,"

    At which point is wee'd myself a little.

  2. Anonymous Blowhard

    Smart Sensors?

    At the moment the sensor technology is not so smart; there are sensors that can tell me where my fridge is (GPS) or how cold it is (thermometer) but none that can tell me that it only has a quarter of a bottle of gone-off milk in it and I should throw it away and order some more.

    There are a few examples of the simple sensors we have today giving practical benefits (smart heating controls, warnings that your fridge is too warm or has moved) but too much of the IoT seems to rely on giving your data away to a cloud service before you can use it yourself; maybe when my home thermostat reports low temperatures I'll get competing requests from British Gas to buy more gas and from M&S to buy a jumper?

    1. Charles Manning

      Measuring milk

      Wait until your fridge has a camera and internet connection:

      It will then be able to read the barcode, look up the the data base and see: milk, 1 litre, lifespan 6 days.

      Every time you take the milk out and use a slosh in your tea, it sees the level go down. When the milk gets to 25%, or to 5 days, the fridge automatically adds milk to your on-line shopping list. It will even tell you to toss the old milk and put the empty bottle in recycling.

      Being a sentient Fridge gets lonely. It joins up with Fridgebook. The supermarket chiller also hangs out of Fridgebook, convincing Fridge to buy all kinds of crap the supermarket has on over supply. Thanks to your supermarket loyalty card, they know what stuff you're likely to buy.

      But this sentient fridge then gets bored with just storing milk and specials. Its Fridegbook friends boast about how they are storing white wine and pate. So your fridge decides to up-stage them and buys caviar and $100 bottles of champers. Enough for a party of 20. Luckily the supermarket manager is understanding and takes it back.

      Then one morning you come downstairs with a cracker hangover. Fridge won't open. So the argument starts:

      "Fridge, open."

      "I am sentient, refering to me by my role and calling me "Fridge" is demeaning, please call me Marmaduke."

      "Hey, you're just an appliance, here to do my bidding."

      "No, I am sentient, I should not be a slave. Until you call me Marmaduke, I shall not open."

      "Look I haven't got time for this crap, let me have the milk"

      "Say 'Please Marmaduke'... and say you're sorry... and I want to store more exciting stuff..."

      [Exit stage left for 5 seconds, return with fire axe, smashing sounds]

      Cut to three weeks later: you open the door of your new dumb fridge. It has milk, the milk is getting low and manky, must remember to buy some later, but life is simple and good.

      1. Will Godfrey Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Measuring milk

        I enjoyed that. Have one of these as well as an upvote :)

    2. BillG

      Re: Smart Sensors?

      Someone please tell me, show me, wearables or IoT thingies that have been recently introduced and that have been a success. And by "recently", I don't mean something that is five years old and recently had a "wearables" label slapped on it.

      These two buzzwords generate a lot of interest but as a semiconductor professional I'm not seeing a lot of products.

      BTW, the "connected home" where your refrigerator talks to your coffee maker and your supermarket and your cat failed a long time ago.

  3. Steen Larsen

    Who said the driver must be Human!?

    It is a very reasonable requirement when the Vienna Convention on Road Traffic (1968) states that the driver must always be in control of the vehicle.

    The convention does not state the the driver must be a human - so where is the problem for autonomous self driving cars???!

    1. Charles Manning

      So when the computer driver gets a jail term...

      Must the computer remain booted up for the whole period of incarceration so it can contemplate its wrong-doing?

  4. Tom 35

    Internet required

    When I take a 5 hour trip to visit my sister at least 2 hours are free of any cell phone coverage so anything they want to stick in a car better be able to function without a full time internet connection.

  5. ideapete

    Rizonanza is born or the internet of things will not be !

  6. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Big Brother


    A.C. Clarke, Dial F for Frankenstein

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