IoT wiki – Internet of things Words you must know to start with IoT

This is the Internet of things IoT wiki guide that describes common terms and meanings used in the IoT. The Internet of things is a quite new topic and one of the most disruptive technology. It is important to know the meanings of the words that stand at the base of this new revolution. This IoT wiki guide will introduce some important words that are used to better understand what is IoT and how to use it. This IoT wiki is somehow an Internet of things vocabulary that you can use and get your path into the IoT ecosystem.

Below a list of words used in the internet of things:

Internet of things (IoT): The first time, the term Internet of Things was officially recognized was in 2005 when the ITU Internet Reports 2005 talked about Internet of things. The internet of things is an ecosystem where objects are connected together exchanging data. Objects can be a complex system or a small system. The important aspect that identifies an object is its capability to connect to the network and exchange information

Industrial Internet of things (IIoT): We define the IIoT as the Internet of things applied to the industrial systems.  IIoT is a set of technologies and strategies derived from IoT and applied to industrial production systems. Foer example, IIoT can be used to monitor a production system so that we assure higher quality levels. IIoT promises to have a large impact on the production systems. The idea that stands behind IIoT is using smart machines with sensors to improve the product quality and the efficiency. An important aspect is represented by Machine to Machine (M2M).

IoT wiki

Device: A device is a smart object with internet capability or in other words, it can connect to the internet. This is the small brick in the Internet of things ecosystem. This ecosystem is built by thousands of devices interconnected. A device can be, for example, a sensor connected to the internet or a wearable that we use nowadays to monitor our health. Moreover, an object can be a simple home appliance that connects to the internet or a sensor we use to monitor a physical property.

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IoT platform: This is an important component in the IoT ecosystem. An IoT platform provides several services and it is the glue between the devices and the data stored in the cloud. An IoT platform provides several services like:

  • Data storage. The information sent by sensors are stored in the cloud and used later
  • Connectivity services: Several devices can be connected to an IoT platform using several protocols (MQTT, HTTP, CoAP and so on)
  • Data analytics: This a set of services (that uses data stored) ranging from simple service to complex services like machine learning and so on
  • Data visualization: It provides several ways to represent data using charts

IoT Gateway: A gateway is, conceptually, an object that connects several devices to the cloud. These devices can be placed in different areas and instead of connecting directly to the cloud they use a gateway to connect to it. A gateway can provide protocol translation feature, for example, a gateway connects to the devices using a low power protocol and sends and receive data from the cloud using a different protocol. Moreover, a gateway can enforce security providing encryption mechanism.

IoT board: A board is MCU (Microcontroller Unit) that provides set futures to connect sensors, actuators and so on. Usually, they can connect to the internet natively or we can add a shield on top to extend their features. For example, Arduino boards are widely used in the IoT prototyping. There are boards with different features and specifications and we have to select the right one according to our needs and use case.

Machine 2 Machine: Machine to Machine (knows as M2M) is a set of protocols and techniques used to make machines talking to each other. This is IoT branch is widely used in Industrial Internet of things. It focuses its attention on the way we can use to make machines exchanging data without the human actions.

MQTT: It is an emerging protocol widely used in IoT protocol. We have discussed it several times in this blog. It is a light-weight protocol message oriented. It decouples the sender of the information from the receiver using a broker that behave as a message router. If you want to more about it, delve into the MQTT. Find more about IoT protocols.

LoRaWAN: LoRa alliance maintains a protocol called LoRaWAN that is a Low Power Wide Area Newtork built for Internet of Things. It enables the things interoperability without using complex systems. LoRA uses a star network topology based on gateways that permit the message flow from the devices to the central server. While the gateways are connected using standard IP connections, the devices use a single-hop wireless network to connect to the gateways.  The connection between the devices and the gateways takes place using different frequency channels and data rate. To have more information read the LoRaWAN official documentation.

SigFox: It is a company that has created a proprietary network that connects objects using a low power network. Nowadays, this network is gaining momentum and it is getting widespread. It uses ISM (Industrial Scientific Medical) radio band. The ultra narrow-band waves pass through solid objects using low power. Find more about SigFox.

At the end of this post, you hopefully know new IoT terms that can be useful to understand the Internet of things. This IoT wiki described the common words and meaning widely used in IoT ecosystem. Once you know the terms and their meaning you can go deeper into IoT. Comment below if you want to add other terms or definitions.

 

 

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