Connected World Conference

I just returned from the show yesterday. From what I observed it was a great success. It's interesting how the MtoM movement is paralleling the evolution of building automation. Today, there are lots of point products and very solutions focused on single markets or customer areas. As a group they know that they need to put standards in place in order for MtoM to really take off. This is something that they are working on very hard.

A couple of quick observations:

  • They need to make sure that they learn from the experiences of the Building Automation, Process Control, and Industrial Automation industries. BACnet and OPC have been very successful because entire industries worked together to make them happen.

  • MtoM is relatively new terminology but the concept of Machines talking to Machines and making intelligent decisions has been around for many, many years. This group has to stop thinking that they are promoting something entirely new. They are making it too hard on themselves. Instead, they need to broaden their sights to include industries that have been doing this for years, embrace those successes, and build upon them. We don't need another stovepipe. You could see signs that this is starting to happen with Tridium being a significant part of the presentations and exhibit hall and S4 doing a segment on Standards in building automation.

  • The standards that are being discussed need to be transport agnostic. There certainly is a very important role here for the wireless carriers to play but it is a mistake if the new standard is written in a way that mandates the use of wireless carrier networks. It's just as important to be able to leverage existing infrastructure, utilizing short range wireless to jump on an existing corporate backbone or interconnect to a residential or small business gateway.