Internet of Things has taken the world by storm. We hear this term everywhere. Is it just another term like Data Warehousing, Big Data and Machine learning which are buzzwords today? Or it is something that we can implement in real life for the benefit of the society as whole. In this article we will explore the technology which enables the implementation of the IoT.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is the network of physical devices, vehicles, buildings and other items which are embedded with electronics, software, sensors, actuators, and network connectivity that enable these objects to collect and exchange data.
The current revolution of IoT is fuelled by the advent of Single Board Computers. A Single board computer is a fully functional computer on a single circuit board. The Single board computer circuit is equipped with processor(s), memory, input/output and in some cases ROM (EEPROM to be specific) for OS storage. Unlike personal computers, we cannot upgrade or change components of the single board computers. They even do not feature expansion slots. The main selling point of SBCs is their small size which enables them to be used in mobile and ubiquitous applications.
Single board computers have been used since the mid-70s for specialised applications. However, with recent advances in electronics manufacturing, the cost of Single Board computers has reduced drastically and we can now buy one for 25 USD.
Also, along with single board computers, microcontroller boards such as Arduino play a significant role in the IoT landscape. Let's have a look at the main players in SBC and the microcontroller board market.
This is one of the most recognized and popular Single Board Computer which is designed and developed by the Raspberry Pi Foundation UK. It is packed with a powerful ARM based processor in all of its iterations. The latest revision is Raspberry Pi 3 which features a Quad core ARM 7 processor coupled with 1 GB of onboard RAM. https://www.raspberrypi.org
Intel also designs and manufactures couple of popular single board computers, Intel Galileo and Intel Edison. Both come with powerful on-board processors optimized for low power consumption.
Arduino has an entire family of microcontroller boards, a Linux based SBC shield and wearable boards for IoT prototyping and implementation. It's very famous among the maker community for prototyping interactive applications
We can use a myriad of sensors with the above mentioned IoT devices.
In Aress, we work on all the above mentioned platforms and have implemented a few working systems around these. We also use various custom shields like GrovePi+. We have also developed expertise in assembling and using custom made sensors, and sensor networks with IoT devices.
Mentioned below are some on the Proof of Concepts we have built so far –
This entire system is developed around Raspberry Pi, an array of relays and a mobile app. We can send instructions to a web service through mobile application. The web service and the database is hosted on the Pi. We can remotely toggle the status of any electrical device connected to our system from any part of the world where we have internet connectivity.Watch Now
This system can be deployed anywhere and we can remotely check the temperature and humidity.Watch Now