Uncovering the best of IOT at #ITWebCloud2021
Practically every aspect of our lives today generates data. From our smartphones that know our location, our buying habits, where we go on holiday, our preferences and social media habits, to our smart watches that track our footsteps and heartbeats.
We are all merging into an IOT world that keeps us connected to the people and things that are important to us. Ian Lester, founder and chief executive of Beyond Wireless, cites several examples of how IOT is not only transforming but also improving our lives.
Firstly, IOT is used for remote cold chain management to ensure that biologicals like vaccines, blood and insulin are kept at the right temperature to avoid spoilage and ensure efficacy.
Next, it enables acoustic gunshot detection and location that helps law enforcement agencies to respond with better speed and accuracy to gun shots.
It's also also used to monitor air quality and democratise air quality data, empowering the public to hold industry and governments to account. “According to the WHO, ambient and household air pollution combined, kills more than seven million people per year. Knowledge is power,” he adds.
Finally, he says, IOT underpins precision farming – using technology to reduce spoilage and maximise crop yields.
Pushing the boundares
On the other hand, Lester says there are several concerns regarding IOT, particularly in the public safety arena.
“As our lives become more and more connected and more and more of what we do, where we go, what we buy, and suchlike is being monitored, there are legitimate concerns around privacy and how much, is too much,” he explains.
IOT in the form of video surveillance, facial recognition, AI-driven behaviour tracking and early warning systems is starting to push the boundaries of what we are prepared to tolerate and what we’re getting in return.
He says his talk will cover humanity, technology, and purpose – in that order. He hopes delegates "will be inspired by the art of the possible".
By using the examples above of what is already being done, we can start asking the question of how, as the tech industry, we can leave a legacy that transcends just profit and market-cap,” ends Lester.