Highlights of activities

The internet of things

Connect the world

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The internet of things (IoT) - the idea of a globally interconnected continuum of devices, objects and things in general emerged with the RFID (Radio-frequency identification) technology. A thing, in the Internet of Things, can be a person with a heart monitor implant, a farm animal with a biochip transponder, an automobile that has built-in sensors or any other natural or man-made object that can be assigned an IP address and provided with the ability to transfer data over a network.


The IoT is significant because an object that can represent itself digitally becomes something greater than the object by itself. No longer does the object relate just to you, but is now connected to surrounding objects and database data. Imagine heterogeneous objects interacting with the physical environment!

The IoT is connecting new places - for Ex. environmental systems, railway tracks, bridges, manufacturing units, healthcare systems - to the internet. When an object can represent itself digitally, it can be controlled from anywhere.


The Internet of Things is a difficult concept to define precisely. Although the concept wasn't named until 1999, the Internet of Things has been in development for decades. The first Internet appliance, for example, was a Coke machine at Carnegie Melon University in the early 1980s. The programmers could connect to the machine over the Internet, check the status of the machine and determine whether or not there would be a cold drink awaiting them.

Bill Joy envisioned Device to Device (D2D) communication, as part of his "Six Webs" framework, presented at the World Economic Forum at Davos in 1999. In the same year, Kevin Ashton, cofounder and executive director of the Auto-ID Center at MIT, first mentioned the Internet of Things in a presentation he made to Procter & Gamble. The concept of the Internet of Things first became popular through the Auto-ID Center at MIT and related market analysis publications.


IoT describes a world where just about anything can be connected and communicate in an intelligent fashion. In other words, with the Internet of Things, the physical world is becoming one big information system! Would IoT make it harder for us to control our own lives? Would there be any privacy? What is the influence on our moral decision making?