The Internet of Things

internet of thingsMany of us have heard the phrase “The Internet of Things” before. It sounds funny, and it doesn’t exactly strike a chord. But it will. As more and more “things” become integrated with the internet, the internet of things will make much more sense. Of course, we probably won’t talk about it in such terms. In fact, most will probably just be referred to as “smart” devices. How will this look? Your computer repair specialists in Billings, MT speculate on the future of the internet of things.


Smart Devices

For years now we have had smart devices. You are likely reading this on a smart phone even. We have smart cars, and machines that talk to each other all the time (GPS systems have done this for decades now). Smart devices are one thing, but that’s not entirely what is meant by the internet of things.


Things that are Intelligent

It is one thing for your refrigerator to “know” to keep your food at a cool 40 degrees. Technically, a refrigerator is a smart device. A few years ago Samsung started to incorporate the internet into some of their refrigerators, effectively turning them into smart appliance. But just because you can post a tweet from your fridge door doesn’t mean the device itself is smart.

When speaking of the internet of things, and the intelligence of things, we have to look a bit deeper. A fridge that allows you access to Twitter is really nothing more than a gimmick. However, a fridge that is linked into your WiFi, and can tell you when you’re running low on eggs, is a useful device. By incorporating sensors, the appliance can turn from being a gimmick, into a commodity. But it’s not just knowing when the milk is about to go bad.


How the Internet of Things will Change Our Lives

The way we live our lives now will seem crude and cumbersome to future generations. How so? Let’s take a look at a typical day in the life of someone from a future generation. Let’s call him Bob.

Bob’s alarm clock is synced with a wristband that he wears 24 hours per day. The clock is designed to sync with his natural sleep cycle and gently wake him up as he is naturally coming out of one of those cycles. Bob has never had a night where he didn’t wake up feeling completely refreshed.

That same wrist band sends communication to Bob’s coffee maker.   By the time he wakes up, the coffee has made itself with no pre-programming required. After an invigorating shower, the temperature that is controlled by how he reacts, Bob heads to the kitchen to make breakfast. His fridge tells him that his eggs are approaching the expiration date, and it is time to buy more milk. Bob makes eggs so they don’t spoil.

When it is time to head to work, Bob starts his car from his phone. The sensors in the car notice that it’s a little chilly this morning, so they warm the vehicle to a comfortable 70 degrees. The GPS chip in Bob’s wristband alerts the house that he has left, so the heater goes to energy saving mode, the lights turn off, and the doors lock. The security system turns on and the cameras begin recording.

As Bob approaches his office his computer starts up. His email program opens and sifts out the junk prioritizing what needs to be done first. Bob parks his car and walks away. After he is 10 feet the car turns off and locks itself. By the time Bob is at the door to his office the lights are on, the computer is running, and the room is at the optimum temperature based on his body heat.

At the end of the day, Bob leaves. Based on the time of day and the fact he is getting further from the office, his computer, lights, and systems go into dormant mode. If anyone tries to power them on manually they will recognize that Bob’s wristband is not nearby, and won’t function at all.

Bob stops at the grocery store on the way home. He grabs a gallon of milk and walks out the front door. The sensors automatically debit his bank account for the milk he is carrying. As Bob approaches his house the GPS notices he is coming home. The lights turn on; the heater brings the temperature back up. By the time he is at his front door it has unlocked.

This could go on, but I think you get the idea. Sensors, monitors, GPS systems, and the like will all work together in order to predict our next movements. Gone are the days of manually fiddling with things and remembering passwords. Here are the days of the internet of things.


iDoctor Will Still Be Around

When those times come, there will be a lot of electronic gadgets. They will all have chips, and they will all wear out, and they will all need fixed. iDoctor will be more than your resource for cell phone and computer repair; they will be your store to repair every device you own. But you won’t need to worry about that, because as the device is breaking, we will automatically be alerted to call and schedule a time that we can fix your smart things.

Of course in the meantime, we can replace your cracked iPhone screen. Give us a call at 406-534-2547 or stop by one of our stores to learn more.