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For many experts, the Internet of Things (IoT) will become the Intelligence of Things during the coming decade, improving and disrupting our lives in equal measure.
The growth of connected devices has accelerated the convergence of the once separate domains of information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT), resulting in industrial IoT (IIOT).
The Internet of Things (IoT) is fast becoming the Internet of everything: the technology is impacting a huge number of sectors, from the transmission and distribution of electricity to the devices we use in our cities and homes. A new all-encompassing joint publication by IEC and ISO establishes a reference architecture for IoT, using a common vocabulary, reusable designs and industry best practices.
Nearly every aspect of our lives bears the imprint of smart technology. From home thermostats controlled via a smart phone to watches that monitor our health, the number of traditional devices that are becoming connected is increasing. This enables us to benefit from new service offerings.
Our world is getting smarter by the minute. Voice recognition allows us to tell devices to do things, such as find a specific TV channel or remind us of all our appointments for the day. Smart agriculture uses sensors, connected machinery and smartphone apps to tell farmers when to water their fields, while intelligent road infrastructure is improving road safety and congestion and all in real time.
The market for smart home devices and systems is booming. The IEC is helping the various industries involved by publishing a number of Standards in the relevant sectors.
A number of low voltage direct current (LVDC) trials are preparing the ground for a wider use of the technology, both in developed and developing countries.
Using new technology and gadgets to help the elderly and people with disabilities stay independent in and outside the home is the approach favoured by most health specialists, not to mention policymakers and governments. The IEC is preparing International Standards focusing on this approach under the global aegis of its Systems Committee on active assisted living (SyC AAL).
The sparc-FMA International Lighting and Facilities event, organized by the Facility Management Association (FMA) took place from 30 May to 1 June, in Sydney. During the event, more than 60 exhibitors, including lighting manufacturers, suppliers and service providers, showcased the latest innovations in the two industries.
Keeping individuals in need of certain levels of assistance active and living at home as independently and as long as possible is emerging as a major issue in many countries. This drives a significant growth in many alarm, access and remote alert systems. Standardization work from a number of IEC Technical Committees (TCs) and their Subcommittees (SCs) makes possible the development and widespread introduction of such systems.
While recent developments in home automation are bound to make anyone’s life easier, there are certain categories of the population for which it may be a life-changing experience: elderly and/or disabled people have very specific accessibility needs and can benefit fully from the technological advances associated with the Internet of Things (IoT) and the smart home.
Energy, and especially electricity, is the golden thread that impacts the majority of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and furthermore, the development of every nation and economy. The UN recognizes electricity access as a key pillar for economic development because it helps to reduce poverty and hunger, improves educational opportunities and enables higher quality healthcare.
To deal with Active Assisted Living (AAL) issues, the IEC has established a Systems Committee, IEC SyC AAL. This SyC has the role of promoting safety, security, privacy and cross-vendor interoperability in the use of AAL systems and services, and of fostering standardization which boosts their usability and accessibility. Its role and scope are constantly being expanded.
What immediately comes to mind when evoking active assisted living (AAL) is that it is essential in helping senior citizens keep as good a quality of life as possible. The focus is obviously on the elderly in industrialized countries where the population is ageing rapidly. But AAL represents more than that – it is meant for all people who suffer from illnesses or physical, mental and social disabilities. The general concept is to ensure that they live their life independently and comfortably in their own environment for as long as they can manage.
Smartness has become a way of life. Today most of our activities are – at least in part – smart. Whether you work, drive, sleep, enjoy an idle moment, it is most likely that smartness is part of it. We also keep our energy consumption in check with smart appliances and meters. Even our pets now have their own smart devices and apps, allowing us to track their every movement. All this smartness has one common denominator: electronic components and in particular sensors.
Energy in itself is not smart. What makes it smart then? The numerous technological advances that allow companies and household to use energy more efficiently.
One of the emerging trends of the 21st century is the ageing of the world population.
The proportion of people aged over 60 will almost double from 12 to 22% between 2015 and 2050, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). In line with this, the WHO World Report on Disability states that currently more than one billion people live with some form of disability worldwide. The figure is expected to rise in the coming years as populations age.
To deal with Active Assisted Living (AAL) issues, the IEC has established a Systems Committee, IEC SyC AAL. This SyC has the role of promoting safety, security, privacy and cross-vendor interoperability in the use of AAL systems and services, and of fostering standardization which boosts their usability and accessibility.