• Timothy Lord

Everything is Connected: The Internet of Things Strengthening Relations

With the technological advancements happening within and beyond our eyes, everything is possible on the internet. The unpredictable digital world offers people countless possibilities, connecting everything and everyone anywhere. Among the relevant internet matters, the IoT has been a growing topic heard in different discourses and conventions. Its progressions are efficiently analyzed and how its operations impact the world from individual effects to worldwide paraphernalia.

The Internet of Things (IoT) encompasses everything connected to the internet. It is a system of universal unified devices, digital and mechanical machines, sensors, wearables people utilize as part of their lifestyle, that has the ability to collect, share or transfer data over a network. Different objects can now be attached to sensors, developing smarter devices. It is a computer-initiated aptitude, meaning no human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction is required for its movement.

The Internet of Things originated during the 1980s and 1990s when adding sensors to basic objects was deliberated. However, it was hindered because technology had not yet bloomed to its potential. Chips were too big, bulky, and heavy, disrupting any ways of attaching it to objects. The wide array of the internet’s possibilities was not yet discovered, so it was not used effectively. Through time, the adoption of RFID tags with its low-power chips provided resolution until the passage of IPv6 provided more opportunities. By 1999, the term Internet of Things, coined by Kevin Ashton, became known to the world and continues to develop. Nowadays, the ubiquity of wireless networks and a variety of computer chips paved the way for the Internet of Things.

Almost anything can constitute as part of IoT. With microcomputer chips, things can transform into bigger ones. It could be a heart monitor implant inserted to a person, or a biochip transponder into a farm animal, or automobiles with built-in sensors. As long as an object can be allotted an Internet Protocol (IP) address and transfer data over a network, it can qualify as part of IoT. Simply put, IoT is anything that has an on and off switch to the internet, such as cellphones, wearable devices, lightbulbs, machine components, and even beyond the little things.

There are two divisions of IoT enterprise use. Industry-wise utilization like sensors in a generating plant or any devices to improve healthcare. It is evident in addressing environmental purposes. IoT can be transportation networks like ‘smart cities’ that help the environment and conserve energy usage. There are also emerging self-driving cars that would lessen pollution and promote public space management. It is also being applied in the business field wherein sensor-generated data results in an efficient system and supply chains because it can be easily supervised.

Moreover, IoT devices can be applied in various fields. It is mostly utilized for better home living. Sensors are available for home security systems like webcams; monitors the situation in the surroundings and voice reminders for visitors when going out. Smart thermostats, air conditioning, and lightbulbs are also present, functioning by themselves if necessary.

While IoT has lots of benefits that the people today would much enjoy, it also has risks and challenges to be calculated. Security is the biggest issue that must not be disregarded. With billions of connected devices worldwide, the internet is prone to malicious tendencies that would disrupt data and invade personal space. It is sensitive to security threats such as privacy issues and data sharing. Unexpected disclosure of these essential data would bring unwanted circumstances to those who use and acquire these objects.

The Internet of Things has undeniably provided efficient avenues for the world to enjoy. It offers products that would make life easier for individuals, companies, and advocacies to be well-implemented. It has come a long way and is still developing. In 2020, Gartner, an analyst firm, came up with a prediction that there will be over 21 billion devices connected. Other forecasts also indicate that there will be approximately 41.6 billion IoT devices all over the world in the succeeding years. Furthermore, data fragmentation would most likely emerge in the years to come. This is made possible with sensors and communications’ prices becoming more affordable. Due to this, more enterprises and institutions are engaging in IoT already.

It is presumed that IoT will expand more in the next few years. However, these advantages are accompanied by mishaps. Its expansion would also mean more avenues for security tendencies to likely happen, so developers need to find solutions to address this hindrance. Tech analysts also expect that IoT will become more acquainted with artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, resulting in better outcomes for both parties. IoT will be likely to reach more fields with the advancements being made. The IoT is a giant network of interconnected things, unpredictable and open to limitless possibilities.

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