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The Internet of Spying Things

Posted by on November 25, 2015.

Time was when we made things, we sold things, we got paid for those things and we received enough to feed and clothe ourselves, provide housing and have enough money left over to buy the materials to make some more things to sell.

Not any more.

And yet you would think – given that the IoT will comprise an expected 25 billion interconnected things by 2020 (according to IDC) – that here is a wonderful opportunity for people to make and sell things to make money. But it appears that anyone approaching the Internet of Things with such a view is doomed to failure.

Insight Brief, a firm that seeks to reduce serious research to easily digestible chunks, says this:

Leveraging the IoT from a business perspective will be through the managing of the data collected and not in the selling of devices.
Managing data with the Internet of Things

Think about this – the business value of the internet of things is not in what those things do for us but in what they collect from us; that is information about us. The internet of things has nothing to do with making life easier or better or safer for us, it is merely a means to collect data about us and presumably sell it to the highest bidder.

How is this a sustainable economic model? As more and more of us turn to collecting immaterial data, who is actually making the things to sustain us? We cannot sow the fields with seeds of data, we cannot build our houses with bricks of data, we cannot stock our larders with bits of data. We have become a society that has lost sight of the need to make things, and have become instead a society that prefers to leech off the efforts of those that do.

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Submitted in: Expert Views, Kevin Townsend's opinions | Tags: