You might remember Microsoft’s mission statement: “Put a computer on every desk and in every home.” That was during the pc revolution. And it happened. A computer on every desk, in every home and eventually in every pocket.
A family of services and devices
It was then in 2013 that Microsoft’s CEO at the time being, Steve Ballmer, announced Microsoft’s new corporate mission: "to create a family of devices and services for individuals and businesses that empower people around the globe at home, at work and on the go, for the activities they value most." Microsoft realized that IT played an increasingly important role in the daily lives of individuals and the activities of businesses. And now, in 2017, a new revolution takes place that once again proves the importance and power of information technology.
The industrial IoT revolution
Where the pc revolution put a computer on every desk, the Industrial Internet of Things revolution will put a computer in every machine.
Internet of Things is the internetworking of ‘objects’ such as devices, vehicles, buildings and other items - embedded with electronics, software, sensors, actuators, and network connectivity that enable these objects to collect and exchange data. It are no longer just people that communicate with one another (using computers and other devices), but ‘things’ that can exchange any kind of information with other ‘things’.
A computer in every machine offers great opportunities. You may have read my blog about Digital Business Transformation, where I give some examples of how Internet of Things, digital business and smart machines can contribute to organizations.
But off course the benefits are not limited to businesses. As an individual, your life gets so much easier with the Internet of Things revolution. Think about smart home applications, allowing you to switch on the heating before reaching home or switch off lights even after you have left home. Or connected cars; vehicles that are able to optimize their own operation, maintenance as well as comfort of passengers using onboard sensors and internet connectivity.
Security and IoT
No worries then, only excitement? Not exactly. We should be worried about security and our privacy. Cyber criminals are thrilled when they hear that now an estimated twenty-five billion devices are online, with another research stating that 70 percent of Internet of Things devices are unsecured. We should not just think about the great things we can achieve with information technology, but also consider the risks associated with it.
Philip van Kemenade is marketer at Dysel and is in contact with software end users every day.