If you have not yet heard of the Internet of Things, chances are that you have seen the concept in a movie or maybe even imagined the technology yourself. It refers to a world in which common devices are all connected to each other and can send information back and forth to each other. Right now, it is a part of daily life to expect your car to sync with your smartphone. However, it may be a bit more far-fetched to think that your refrigerator would update with your phone to tell you when the food items stored in it will expire and require replacement. This is what we have to look forward to in the very near future. Common household items will communicate in their own way to feed us relevant information about seemingly mundane tasks in our day.
While there is plenty to be gained from increasing efficiency in our daily lives, there are even more important goals that can be achieved with the advent of the Internet of Things. Being able to track data about a patient undergoing care for a disease means that doctors and nurses can respond quickly to any changes in a patient’s condition and can take a more proactive response to treating their needs. We have already been experiencing the benefits of health tracking through fitness trackers that link with our phones and computers. This data could do much more for society than simply assisting with weight loss. It could identify red flags in the diagnosis of deadly diseases and giver our healthcare providers a more accurate picture of the environmental factors that could be affecting our general health.
It seems highly unlikely that the first wave of technology for the Internet of Things would be packaged into our household appliances. Without many different appliances having the ability to communicate with each other, the data produced from a small sample will not result in any significant changes to how we live our lives. However, it is much more likely that large companies will lead the way in bringing this technology to the forefront in unprecedented ways. Imagine a large factor equipped with dozens of workers and many dangerous machines. If all of those machines could “talk” to one another and record data in a central location, there might be fewer accidents as a result of humans being impaled by a machine or forgetting to complete some of their safety tasks. This could reduce the overall number of deaths and injuries in the workplace across the world.
The same concept holds true for auto accidents. If cars are able to communicate with one another and can send warning signals when another car is approaching too quickly or closely, many accidents could be automatically averted. In addition, construction works stationed on major highways would have a reduced risk of accidents because safety barriers around their work site could receive signals from incoming traffic and issue alerts when drivers are operating their vehicles in an unsafe manner. Given that deaths from traffic accidents are one of the leading causes of death in the U.S., the ability of this technology to improve safety conditions on the road is reason alone to cheer for its success.
Right now, the major thing holding back the Internet of Things is a sizeable investment. It takes quite a bit of infrastructure and reconfiguration of existing devices to install this incredible technology. The most likely route to fruition is that major companies will take up the cause and begin to increase their investment in making their devices communicated with each other. After some of the largest companies begin to tackle this challenge, more of their competitors will be required to follow suit because they will not want to be seen as falling behind the pack. It may take a few years, but it will soon become the norm that new devices and appliances will be configured with smart capabilities. As revolutionary and expensive as this concept seems, the underlying technology already exists. What waits to be seen is how quickly and effectively it can be incorporated into regular items we rely on each day.
About Jason Hope
Jason Hope has achieved many things in his personal and professional life, but he is perhaps most commonly thought of as a futurist. This means that he is dedicated to the forward progress of society and is focused on what exciting advancements are on the horizon for all of us. Jason Hope firmly believes that technology has the potential to change our lives for the better and has been doing so for centuries. He actively supports many movements and entrepreneurs in the hopes of uncovering a new discovery or perfecting existing technology to solve more of the world’s complicated problems. Hope is one of the most vocal supporters of the Internet of Things and has written extensively on the potential of this technology to improve many aspects of society.
Hope earned a degree in finance and graduated from business school in the hopes of launching companies that could set the world on fire in all the right ways. Jason Hope has been able to aptly combine his business savvy with his passion for technology in his consistent support of the SENS Foundation. This organization is committed to increasing the average life expectancy as well as improving the quality of life for all people from diverse backgrounds. Rather than only focusing on piecemeal treatments for diseases that have already begun to destroy the body, the skilled researchers at the SENS Foundation are striving to understand and stop these deadly diseases before they catch hold and start the process of bodily decay. The anti-aging work undertaken by the SENS Foundation is completely revolutionary to date, and Hope says that he could not be prouder that he gets to play a role in the advancement of this critical research.