We all know cars are getting smarter, and car manufacturers are competing more and more not just based on reliability but increasingly based on technology. At Metal Toad, we had some fun hacking into a minivan to see what kind of machine learning we could do with the data being output by a modern car. With the drop in prices for industrial grade Internet of Things (IoT) and other smart device
Prior to coming to Metal Toad, I worked as a .NET engineer at an Internet of Things (IoT) startup. My job was to stabilize and expand an existing cloud-based infrastructure that served as a central hub for IoT communications. This hub allowed a variety of entities to connect to the cloud for key operations:
IoT devices reported status and checked for incoming commands
mobile devices checked on device status and issued commands
Do you ever wish you had a certain tool, but you don’t have the budget for it, or it doesn’t even exist? I’m here to tell you: you can build it!
And as I discovered, the build can give you more than that tool you want—it can also be a great way to strengthen your skills, add value for your teammates, and even have a bit of fun.
Do a search on “IoT projects” and you’ll turn up endless pages of fantastic Internet of Things ideas and examples. Roll-your-own home security system! Track your cat’s movement! Build your own droid! With so many resources available, one might think all the problems are solved, all the answers just a few clicks away.
This year’s hackathon was all about the Internet of Things (IoT)—pulling data from the real world and sending it to the cloud, then finding ways to analyze and manipulate that data for insights.
This year’s hackathon challenge was to explore the Internet of Things (IoT) using cloud technology. As a Scrum Master, I have a longstanding interest in supporting the emotional wellbeing of teams, because it’s an important element of productivity that often gets overlooked.
I spend all my time at work dealing with software. So going into this year’s hackathon, I was excited to get hands-on (and in over my head) with hardware. Having never even touched a Raspberry Pi before, I was in for an interesting couple of days!
Our team was just two people—me and Shivani Thakar. We set out for a small, achievable project broken down into phases.
Our first step was to set up a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B and Camera Module v2
The very concept of automation leads to a moral and ethical dilemma regarding the workforce. People need to work to support their families, but there are tasks that could be done better, faster, and cheaper if automated. This leads to a tension between upper management and employees where one group is actively interested in automation and the other group is actively threatened by it.
I've long been curious about the effectiveness of the built-in antennas that are attached to common WiFi modules. Can that tiny, serpentine PCB track really match the performance of a "real" antenna? How does it even work?
I set up a quick test to find out. Using a pair of ESP8266 development modules, I set up a test measuring gateway ping times, and sending the resulting values to AWS IoT Core. Messages are routed to Firehouse, stored in S3, and aggregated with Athena. (AWS has put together an impressively elegant IoT pipeline, but that's a future post!)
Like anything else in its early lifecycle, the Internet of Things (IoT) has a ton of hype but there are still a lot of unknowns when it comes to the actual business value. Maybe you heard C3 IoT advertising on NPR, maybe your electric utility put a smart meter on your house, or maybe you got a chuckle from Juicero.