The future of IoT: Two research advances from the lab

By Joe Mariani

Excerpt: Businesses need to keep pace with technology developments to stay competitive.
In today’s environment of technology-driven change, businesses have a vital need to know what the next technologies will be. The sooner a company knows what technologies are coming, the sooner it can begin to build business models and strategies to take advantage of them. New technologies can emerge from any number of sources, from the military to a student’s dorm room. But many of the cutting edge advances that will likely drive future change are also currently experiments in the labs of computer scientists. This blog will highlight two such research advances which point towards the future of the Internet of Things (IoT) and all of the industries that it touches.

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The Journey to Industry 4.0: Watch the Webinar

By Brenna Sniderman

One question I get a lot focuses on the difference between Industry 4.0 and the Internet of Things. “Aren’t they the same thing?” Well, they are and they aren’t. The Internet of Things is a construct by which objects are connected and made smarter. Industry 4.0 connotes the fourth Industrial Revolution, in which this interplay between digital technologies and the physical world is scaled to an industrial level to enable connected production, supply chains, business operations, and beyond. In essence, it’s a scaled up, amped up, industrialized version of the IoT—which is why Industry 4.0 is also known to some as the Industrial Internet of Things.

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Splitting image: How digital twins can drive value

By Jonathan Holdowsky

I have heard it said that, somewhere in the world, there is someone who could be your exact double. Now, I’m not referring to genetic twins. I am talking about look-alikes who have no blood relation to you whatsoever. Whatever its scientific basis, this spooky notion has often found its way throughout literature, mythology, and film. The Germans name this ghostly counterpart a “doppelganger”; the French, a less awkward “sosie”. That there could be a twin stranger somewhere in the world may strike you as unsettling—or quaintly amusing. But if you ever did cross paths with your doppelganger, you could at least take solace in the fact that the resemblance would be merely skin-deep. This mirror companion would not actually be you.

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The rise of complexity in digital supply networks

By Stephen Laaper

The move to digital supply networks can be daunting, especially when organizations consider how exactly to implement these solutions into their existing supply chain. With so much information and hype about digital, it can be hard for organizations to know what works for them and what might be a hidden roadblock. However, when the digital transformation is implemented correctly, it can also seamlessly enable an organization’s digital operations.

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The future of auto retailing: preparing for the evolving mobility ecosystem

Posted by Andrew DinsdalePhilipp Willigmann, Scott Corwin, and Jeff Glueck

Remember the last time you bought a car?

Hardly anyone finds today’s automotive retail experience—researching, contacting the dealership, test driving, financing, and closing the deal—efficient and satisfying.1

Indeed, just 17 out of more than 4,000 car shoppers in a recent survey said that they were happy with the status quo car-buying process.2 That’s 17 people, not 17 percent.

Auto retailers have acknowledged this dissatisfaction and responded with incremental changes. As other industries become more customer-centric, however, creating a less painful retail experience is increasingly table stakes for carmakers and dealers. Continue reading “The future of auto retailing: preparing for the evolving mobility ecosystem”

Getting to Revenue with IoT in Manufacturing Logistics

Posted by Joe Mariani

It’s not just for consumers and smart gadgets. Whether you call it the Internet of Things (IoT), Industry 4.0, Machine 2 Machine communication or any of the other names by which it goes, the connectivity of devices was among the most talked about technologies of 2015.i While many manufacturers and logistics providers have jumped on board and are using IoT to improve inventory visibility or flows through the production floor, there are still some hurdles to adoption. As we discussed in a recent article, the vast majority of IoT applications right now serve only to cut costs or increase efficiency. While the costs of sensors and computing have dropped in recent years, using IoT solely for cost cutting still may not be enough to justify the initial investment required.

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Made for each other: Semi-conductor manufacturing and the IoT

Posted by Joe Mariani

For more than 50 years, computers have been getting faster and smaller at a regular, predictable rate. This process is known as Moore’s law. In 1965 Gordon Moore noted that every year the number of components on an integrated circuit doubled, largely as a function of the shrinking size of the transistors that made up the majority of the components in those circuits.i While recent chip launches have held true to the advances predicted by Moore’s law, the cost to produce those chips is beginning to increase to a point that could threaten further advances. Perhaps ironically, the next generation of super-fast chips may actually be thanks to a growing market for chips that do not need to be particularly fast at all.
semi-conductor manufacturing

Almost since it was first coined, detractors (including Moore himself, we might add) have been predicting the demise of Moore’s law.ii Chips simply cannot go on getting faster, and transistors smaller, forever. One problem is physics. As transistors get smaller and smaller, electrons can begin quantum tunneling through the gate of a transistor, losing power like gas leaking out of the tank in your car.
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Getting business on board with additive manufacturing

Posted by Monika Mahto

Monika Mahto
As additive manufacturing nears everyday use, business managers must get onboard with the technology basics and underlying benefits

I’m headed to Bangalore for an annual tech conference. Over the years I’ve come to know a lot of other regular attendees, and we have debated and discussed many technologies as they move from the theoretical to the applied state. The evolution, development, and application of Additive Manufacturing (AM) has been one of our favorite topics–and just look at how far that technology has come. We are fast approaching using 3D printing in our everyday lives. It’s possible there may even be 3D printed parts on the large commercial aircraft I am about to board!
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