The Top 10 Areas to Explore When Considering the Internet of Things

I love lists.

50 ways to lose weight without trying. Top 10 money-saving ideas. The 4 essentials of grooming your bullmastiff. These lists can often be found in the tabloids at the grocery store checkout line. Personally, I have been drawn more to ones pertaining to technology, which are in far shorter supply, than diet lists or photo exposés on Kim Kardashian.

Still, I like lists anyway, as they tend to provide structured focus on certain topics. For me, that would be the Internet of Things. In fact, this list will serve as the framework for a series of blogs over the next few months that will drill into what I will now cover at a high level: namely the top 10 areas to explore about the Internet of Things. Here is my list:

  1. The far ranging implications of the Internet of Things. What does the Internet of Things really mean, and how might it manifest itself in reality? What are the far ranging implications of the Internet of Things and how should people be thinking about this in the context of the future?
  2. The future of mobile health. How will the Internet of Things enable healthcare improvements? Where will this happen? What are the component technologies and how will they work? What will be the implications to healthcare as we know it? Where are the signs of progress in that direction?
  3. The future of energy delivery, including smart grids. What are the key elements of smart grids and energy delivery (including water, oil & gas, and electricity) utilizing the Internet of Things? What are the implications of this? Where is there already evidence of progress? What are the challenges?
  4. What will a connected city really look like? What will be connected and how? What will be the implications? What are the challenges? Why will cities become connected and what does that really mean?
  5. What will smart vehicles look like? We have all heard about the Google smart car. What is a driverless car and how would it work? What are the component technologies that need to be incorporated? How practical is this today? What needs to happen to make this a reality?
  6. What are the biggest impediments to the Internet of Things? If the promise of the Internet of Things is so strong, then why are there impediments? What are they? How can they be overcome? What are the implications to these impediments in terms of time and money? What are some very real examples of these and how are they being addressed?
  7. What are the critical issues around governance for the Internet of Things? Where is this data produced? Who owns the data and why? What are the implications? Who controls the data, and to what end?
  8. What are the critical issues regarding security for the Internet of Things? What can be done to safeguard solutions in the Internet of Things? What risks are inherent to smart grids? Mobile health? Smart cities? Are we more or less vulnerable when the Internet of Things is a reality? What are the security issues for the average person?
  9. What are the economics associated with the Internet of Things? What does this Internet of Things represent financially? Where is the financial burden or savings realized? Why? What has to happen for the savings and return on investment of these systems to be realized? What assumptions are inherent to the financial projections regarding the Internet of Things?
  10. What are the key ethical considerations and political considerations regarding the Internet of Things? What will the Internet of Things mean for people? Will it allow markets to flourish, and in turn, people to flourish, or will it allow concentration of power and resources at the expense of the many? Will it make the world safer or less safe? Will it enhance the quality of life for all people, or a fraction of the population? How can the Internet of Things be considered in the context of a truly better world? What are the opportunities and challenges associated with that consideration?

I don’t believe I am any smarter than the next guy when it comes to most of these issues, so much of my speculation needs to be framed as just that: speculation. I am going to try to explore these topics with some depth, rigor, and hopefully a great deal of objectivity. That said, this is too important not to explore. I invite you to not only follow this series, but weigh in. Nobody has a lock on good ideas or intelligent insights. I am looking forward to exploring this with you.

Leave your Question or Comment