The magic of the Internet of Things

The British science fiction author Arthur C. Clarke posited three laws while writing his vision of the future: 1. When an expert says something is possible, they’re probably right. When they say something is impossible, they’re probably wrong. 2. The only way to really discover what the limits are, is by crossing them a little bit. 3. Every sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. When it comes to the Internet of Things (IoT), these laws certainly seem to be true. No longer does technology limit us from making magic. The blending of physical and virtual technologies brings the world around us to life, as if we were living in a Pixar movie. I regularly get sent clips of Kickstarter projects or TED talks that showcase amazing new applications. One that I recently received demonstrated Flic: the wireless smart button. In short, it’s a button that can be connected to all kinds of services. For example: You can stick it on a wall in your living room, push it, and the lights will go out, the TV will turn on and automatically tune in to Netflix. If my mother were to see this, she would be convinced it is magic. The difference is that at ICT we spend so much time working with technology that within 10 seconds the “illusion” can be explained, and can be recreated after half an hour of playing around with various components. You would think that this would quickly take away the magic, yet nothing is less true. This is because Flic shows us something beautiful: it’s not the enabling technology that brings the illusion to life; it’s the show around it. Or in case of IoT solutions: the ease of use, the aesthetic design and the seamless integration with the services that makes it all possible. So what makes the illusion reality? The integration into the end user’s life! That is where everything comes together. Users do not have to adapt to the technology any longer. They do not have to learn special skills, or take time to learn the ‘trick’. The illusion is effortless and without thought. And this is the real power of IoT. Not everything in my life has to be connected, but if it improves my quality of life then it is indeed very welcome. The power of ICT Group is that we have spent nearly four decades building up our expertise in deploying a wide range of technological solutions across several market segments. Along the way we have encountered limits, and stretched them. With our signature approach that places security and privacy at the core, and focuses on added value for the user, we are looking for challenges. We want to make magic: an illusion for the end user, and an added value for smarter cities, smarter industries and smarter healthcare.

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