VC angel and entrepreneur Esther Dyson discusses our imminent Internet of thingees and other topics in a must-read LinkedIn article about the AllThingsD No. 11 conference.
The internet of things is a world in which the experimental, prototyping attitude of software hackers now infects hardware hackers. My favorite anecdote from someone developing an intelligent pill bottle that can remind users to take their pills and make (almost) sure they had done so: “We went out to a shopping mall yesterday to see how people reacted, and we learned a lot. Today we’re making a new prototype, and tomorrow we’ll got out and test it again.” No more sending specs to China for a new mockup to be delivered in weeks…
Put a file in Dropbox folder andÂ Dropbox Automator will do any number of automated tasks like converting documents to PDFs then sending them to Google Docs, uploading photos to Facebook or Flickr after writing text on them, or sending a status update to Facebook. Lots more too. Whee.
Arieso, a company in Newbury, England, that advises mobile operators in Europe, the United States and Africa, documented the statistical gap when it tracked 1.1 million customers of a European mobile operator during a 24-hour period in November. The gap between extreme users and the rest of the population is widening, according to Arieso. In 2009, the top 3 percent of heavy users generated 40 percent of network traffic. Now, Arieso said, these users pump out 70 percent of the traffic.
Arieso’s report didn’t identify what type of usage the 1% was engaging in, but Michael Flanagan, the chief technology officer, speculated that it’s a combination of people who are working on their laptops via a 3G network while traveling on business andÂ those who have unlimited data plans and are watching a lot of videos.
Surprising fact (to me at least):
In countries like Sweden and Finland, smartphones now account for more than half of all mobile phones, Mr. Zarandy said. About 35 percent of Finns also use mobile laptop modems and dongles, or modems in a USB stick; one operator, Elisa, offers unlimited data plans for as little as 5 euros, or $6.40, a month. As a result, Finns consume on average 1 gigabyte of wireless data a month over an operator’s network, almost 10 times the European average.
This is geek heaven. Ifttt allows you send email reminders to yourself, autopost from Google+ to Facebook, alert when it will rain tomorrow, send starred Google reader items to Evernote, backup up Facebook photos to Dropbox, and lots more.
It’s free and users are happily writing all manner of useful tools. You can too. It’s a little confusing at first. Go to channels to add the services you use. Then choose among the selection of options for that service (or make up your own), like notifying you when a new book is added to the Kindle Top 100 free eBooks. Oh wait, someone already wrote that!