#NodeSummit: Everything is a Node, the rise of M2M and Mobile

Date: Sat Apr 26 2014
Vish Nandlall, Ericsson -- Ericsson creates fixed line communication in 1876..? Created mobile communication in 1990..? General point is that the telecom industry has moved from wireline, to wireless, and now the interconnected mesh of things and each shift has been a large expansion of the number of connections and the complexity of the whole system.

Shows a graph with hockey stick exponential growth. "Things" soon would be 50 billion.

Is this "sustainable" in terms of ecologically sound idea? Does it make sense from an ecological standpoint to be filling our world with so many gizmos whose expected lifetime is the 18 months of product life expectancy? He talks about 50 billion devices, but normal life expectancy of consumer electronics is very short. Can we survive that in terms of ecological footprint. What happens to that 50 billion gizmos when they get thrown away every 18 months?

We need to rethink the basic purpose of the web. Is it just about sending documents, as was the original purpose of the web as envisioned by Tim Berners-Lee. With zillions of devices and machine-machine connections accessing various services and API's, doesn't the web need to support other things than documents?

We need to rethink society. Networked society is the marraige of mobility, broadband and the cloud. As people it creates new ways to interact with each other using the mobile devices and the internet to mediate those connections.

How will all this work? Most end-users have a weak understanding of mobile networks. They have a good understanding of social networks.

A social web of things makes user naturally aware of e.g. power or other gizmos in their life. For example you can model a gizmo as if it were a "friend" in your social network, such as the electricity meter in your house. You can subscribe to updates from your electricity meter.

Hence Ericsson envisions a social network where you have messages going on between the gizmos in your house.

In part this is about the smart grid (as its known in the U.S.) initiatives where we want a full ecosystem of information technology to help society as a whole manage the use of energy. Otherwise there might be an explosion of energy use that could kill the environment, but if energy use is managed well its growth could be contained.