The Internet of Things (the “IoT”) refers to an integrated system or network of hardware and software that allows the various devices to communicate and share information with each other. A way of understanding the Internet of Things is by imagining physical devices as being neurons; carriers of a synapse response, message senders and receivers. IoT allows for greater efficiency and streamlining of a vast array of businesses and platforms; utterly transformative thanks to the digital era.
Digital Rube Goldberg devices
IoT can be a somewhat abstract concept to comprehend; it’s a huge topic with endless applications. One way of understanding IoT is by envisioning a primitive Rube Goldberg device. One action, such as the release of a lever, causes a chain of reactions with an end result; every action has a subsequent reaction. The IoT is a digital chain of events with an end result; the implementation of software streamlines the process of getting from point A to point B; the end goal is achieved while halving the process. The chain of command has been shortened to maximize efficiency thanks to digital automation. Why does implementing the IoT make the process so much more efficient? Removing the possibility of human error.
IoT and healthcare
The Internet of Things has undoubtedly changed the world. It is difficult to imagine a pre-internet world. In addition to allowing for instantaneous information to be available at the touch of a button, the IoT has made important, life-saving advances possible. For example, the IoT has made electronic medical records a possibility. A patient’s medical history can be instantly accessed by a physician thanks to electronic medical records; or, in other words, the IoT (in this case, the “thing” being a person’s health record). This is sometimes called the Internet of Medical Things.
Of course, with respect to healthcare, the IoT is not limited to electronic medical records. IoT extends to everything from digitally monitored pacemakers to emergency notification devices to bionic prosthetic limbs. IoT has revolutionized healthcare, maximizing technological advances and allowing doctors and nurses to devote more time to urgent patient care.
IoT and daily life
IoT has changed virtually every aspect of daily life. From remote work to online classrooms, the IoT harnesses the power and possibility of the internet to make the world a smaller, more efficient place. On a basic level, the implementation of sensors, monitored and managed digitally, has made vast improvements in the logistics and handling of toll collection, thus reducing traffic accidents and congestion. Machine learning has revolutionized manufacturing, allowing for huge advances in engineering, construction and on-the-job safety. The IoT also helps to maintain safety; from home security systems that can be digitally monitored to electronic monitoring devices (i.e. ankle bracelets) used to ensure compliance with the law.
The IoT has completely transformed the way communication takes place in the workplace. Even in environments where sensitive, confidential information is exchanged such as in law offices or governmental spaces, messages are able to be exchanged in a secure manner thanks to the IoT, allowing for the exchange of encrypted messages shared using closed-loop intranet networks. The IoT is crucial to life in the age of information, making the world more efficient, and allowing for the necessary advances in science and progress to take place at a staggering pace.