There is a whole range of issues that need to be addressed while building a large IoT network: from funding and political engagement through technology and software automation to big data analytics and audience engagement. The more we can focus on real-world applications, worthwhile objectives and effective partnerships, the faster we will reach the full potential of IoT.
Jonathan Steel, founder and CEO of Deliver Change Ltd, will be showing how to raise the public awareness on the full potential of the IoT technology. During the IOT360 Summit in Rome, he will also illustrate how individual actions can contribute to solving issues connected to healthcare (e.g. reducing the air pollution).
Read more about the IOT360 Summit taking place in Rome on 27-29 October 2015.
Read full interview with Jonathan Steel, speaker at IOT360 Summit
IOT360 is an important event aiming at bringing a full perspective on IoT-related projects. What are your expectations about the main topics being discussed this year?
I think the main topics being discussed this year concern the development and challenges of large-scale ‘real’ IoT – not just the technology, but issues such as privacy, legality, and sustainable business models. Much of the talk at conferences to date has centred around potential and ideas, pilots and technology demonstrators. I think the latter part of 2015 and 2016 will be about the industrialization of large IoT networks, and the discovery of how the data from such networks can be used. In time, we will discover that the majority of what is called a ‘tsunami’ of IoT data is of little use – of unknown provenance and not properly calibrated – and the remainder will mostly be useful in narrow contexts. There will however be a small percentage which is fantastically valuable, and will be mashed up and used in ways we can’t yet imagine.
The IoT-focused research reserves a special place to the issues connected to healthcare. As directly involved in a project of common interest, such as AirSensa, how do you describe the challenge to make aware the public opinion on the full potentiality of IoT technology?
Deliver Change started the AirSensa project nearly three years ago. At that time, it was very difficult to get people to understand how dangerous air pollution is to all of us. Fortunately since then, media coverage has greatly increased, so we find ourselves in the right place at the right time to roll out a very large mesh of air quality sensors, and make use of the data to help drive avoidance strategies and reduction solutions.
Despite this, we still face an uphill battle to engage with people about a subject which can seem very negative. The most important thing for us is to make it clear that people have a lot of influence over their own exposure to air pollution, and over how much their actions contribute to it. On the first point, our app (launching in November) will have a low-pollution travel planning element which will allow people to plan to avoid pollution whichever mode of transport they choose. On the second point, we need to keep pushing home messages about not buying diesel cars for example, particularly for those people usually only making small journeys.
What is your idea of the role that the IOT360 Summit should play in order to address research and industry efforts in the field?
I think conferences such as IOT360 can make a significant contribution to the field, not only by bringing together many different stakeholders, but by ensuring the right focus for the conference overall – on practical issues and applications. Building a large IoT network is not like scaling a mountain – there isn’t a single thing which is the primary challenge. Success means scaling a whole range of mountains – from funding and political engagement through technology and software automation to big data analytics and audience engagement. The more we can focus on real-world applications, worthwhile objectives and effective partnerships, the faster we will reach the IoT we all believe is capable of achieving great things.