Internet of Things

Gilford T Hapanyengwi

Internet of things is a situation where ordinary life objects are addressable and can be communicated with and to through the Internet.  This area has seen increased attention in the last few years.  The following issues are applicable in this space of Internet of Things (IoT):

1.       Work being done in IoT: There is lots of works happening including the ethics side of the issue.  Ethics is significant as there are issues of privacy and intrusion that have to be addressed. The fact that communication can happen spontenously means that both desirable communication and undesirable communication could happen.  What are the implications of the "wrong" information being shared because of the spontenous communication from IoT.

2.       Funding: IoT is being taken seriously by the developed world.  For instance the European Union has put assed 50Million for research on IoT.

3.       Standardization Issues: IoT is a young but very dynamic field.  There are a lot of institutions involved in research on IoT.  As a result this has created interoperability and standards inconsistency issues.  This is something that needs to be looked at, without stifling innovation of course.

4.       Gadgets and more:  IoT is not about gadgets only.  What is being created is a whole ecosystem.  Hence it also has aspects of ownership and accountability. The social science of the equation comes into play in this instance.

5.       Security:  Safety is key to IoT.  Issues of data security, systems failure, network reliability, and ordinary virus & spam attack have to be built into the system for it to be reliable and usable.

6.       Network and Supporting Infrastructure:  The network on which the IoT systems are sitting is material.  There is need for the network to be bother reliabl and seamless.

Ecosystem characteristics:  There are a number of issues to consider with regards the management of the IoT ecosystem.  These include Identity management and persona management. 


The question to be possed for our environment is where can we profitably and sustainably use IoT.