By Jeff Gowan
There has been a lot of attention on the internet of things (IoT) over the past two years. Before coming to work at Wind River I had never heard the term before. I’ve heard it plenty within Wind River because in many ways it’s the evolution of the embedded business we’ve been in for the last 30 years. However, those who are not in the embedded space generally don’t know anything about it. When I started hearing IoT referred to on NPR, I knew it was no longer just the “new embedded.” Rather, it is becoming a significant technology trend which will have profound effects on our day to day lives. If people didn’t know embedded, they will definitely know the IoT. And after reading this you will know more about the industrial IoT.
The IoT is often thought of as things like connected refrigerators that will tell you when you are running out of milk. Or perhaps some sort of fitness device that will track your every movement and provide detailed analysis (for what purpose I’m honestly still not 100% sure.)
This is all interesting but the jury is out as to what sort of impact these consumer applications will have on us over the long-term. These use cases also represent what are now fairly niche markets.
We need to think bigger, and probably think about things that maybe aren’t as flashy as some of the consumer IoT use cases. This is where Industrial IoT comes in to play.
To help understand the impacts of the internet of things on the industrial market, we’ve assembled a team of industry experts to discuss what the future of our industrial world will look like. These are visionaries in the field who are not only paying attention to these trends, they are actually implementing them.
We spoke with representatives from: ABB, ARC Advisory Group, GE, Intel, Korn Ferry, Schneider Electric, and Wind River. We took these conversations and put them into a 3 part documentary short film series. This is not a discussion of products, this is a discussion of ideas, trends, and solutions from the top leaders in the business.
In this series these experts will discuss the current state of the industrial market, some of the challenges and opportunities associated with staying the course with traditional equipment and processes vs. adopting new technologies and evolving, and will also take a look into the future of industrial automation to give a glimpse of what lies ahead.
I find these films to be really inspiring because critical infrastructure doesn’t get enough attention. It’s so important to how we live but we often take the building blocks of our modern life for granted. They must work, so most just assume they do. But what if they could work better and do more for us?
The films cover a variety of industries such as industrial automation, power manufacturing, transportation, and medical. The experts discuss how existing industrial infrastructure has not changed in 30+ years. While on one hand this is a testament to the quality of those machines, the fact is they are growing obsolete and expensive to maintain and replace. The series also discusses the value of connecting the unconnected. These connections can help bring about the ability to better optimize systems and perform predictive maintenance instead of waiting for something to fail.
If you want to better understand the way of the internet of things, these films are a must watch. You will learn how the future is being shaped today, and it’s pretty exciting.