The Search Engine Series: Part One – The idea of Search engine

As of today, the term Search Engine is synonymous  to Google. It’s the world’s largest and possibly the most efficient search engines of  this time. I was always fascinated by it, but also the sheer complexity of it made me think of it as something extremely difficult to understand. And yes, it is a complex engine that has taken years and thousands of people to bring to a stage where it is right now. But this fascination of mine led me to discover a way to learn and use search Engines.

Thanks  to on of my friends at work, I came across Apache Solr. Solr, is an open source search engine, based on Lucene which is an open source text based search engine library. This search engine is extremely powerful and there are some amazing implementation of it that is competing with Google. One such example is DuckDuckGo.

Solr is an enterprise grade search engine that is capable enough to crunch Terra Bytes of data without any  problem ,provided there is enough resources allocated to it. So, I read about this and found that I could use it to learn more about how search engines to work.  I came across a lot of new topics and some others which I had misconceptions about. Indexing, analyzers, tokenizers, searching with regular expressions and facet searches are some of the concepts related to it.  I spent some time reading about it and soon enough I was able to index a csv file  that had information about my music collections and was able to search for songs , albums, etc with the search results being generated in milliseconds.

Within no time, I had a search engine server running on my local machine and it was like a mini search engine for my music collection. This gave me an idea to dive more deeper into Solr and learn about all the things I could do with it. So, I decided to create a blog series on search engines to share and document the various things that I come across and learn.

I haven’t yet decided the number of posts that will come under this series, but I would like to keep each of them short with rich information. By the end of it, I aim to build  a search engine for the music collection that can search songs based on several criteria and also give functionality to play a song directly from the search result screen.Somewhat like a web based music player.

If you have any ideas or things you would like to share or contribute,  share it in the comments below.

 

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Top Skills and Tools required by a proficient Web Designer

Web designers need to have the right kind of skill set and a great imaginative power to build something unique and beautiful. But skill alone does not serve the purpose. One would need to be familiar with certain tools as well to use their skills in the right way and bring out something wonderful very fast. This post shares the most important skills and tools required by a Web Designer to become proficient at what he or she designs.

Skills

1) Web Technology

This is the most important skill a web designer must be thorough with. Web Technology includes technical skills such as HTML 5, CSS 3, Javascript, Jquery, etc.. These would help you to bring out the design that you have in mind when used in the right kind of way. Understanding web technology becomes easy when you spend more time with it. There are a few great websites that help you to learn these important technical skill set like: MSDN , W3Schools , CodeAcademy. But this isn’t the end. Once the technical things are learnt only constant practice and creating something new will give you the expertise to build and design something that is worthy.

2) Logic of Design

As a designer, it is important to have some logic and sense of design. This will help you to understand better, how designing can be approached and also learn the various design elements. This is called the Basic Design Principles and courses exist to teach you the fundamentals.

3) Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization or SEO are the ways in which content of a website can be structured so that it can be easily detected by search engines and can be ranked easily. This is helpful for designers to decide and have an idea about where and what type of content can be placed in a website so that it can achieve a higher rank. It would also help users to find the website very easily.

4) Selecting the right tools

Experience with various tools provides the skill to select the right kind of tools at the right situation. There are cases when requirements of the client or customer demand a different set of tools to be used. In such cases only the experience will help you to make the right judgements of the tool set to use and complete the job at hand.

Tools

1) Layout and Boilerplates:  This should be well understood by the web designer and also using this keeps web design much more usable for the end user. These help in maintaining alignment issues in check. Tools are also available to be adapted as a pre-made out of the box experience. It also helps the designer to make the website more adaptive and fit to almost all the devices that are existing in the market.  Examples of this are:

2) Design Implementation Tools: There are times when Designers cannot rely on Web developers to code and develop websites before the designer can exactly know how the design has turned out to be. Or there might be scenarios when the designers need to show prototypes of their work. So instead of portraying static images or layout, tools can be used to make the prototypes dynamic and interactive. All this can be done without the need to code. Examples of these kind of tools:

  • Invision – To develop prototype quickly.
  • Webydo – to design e-commerce websites without having to code

3) Pictures and colours: As a web designer, having the right knowledge of tools for storing and editing pictures as well as working with various colour palette is important. For editing pictures, most of you would have heard of or used Photoshop. How there are other alternatives which are better in many different cases. An example is Sketch, which allows you to create stunning designs and interfaces. A tool like Layervault helps designers to store pictures using a Version Control System (VCS). Finally, there is Adoble Kuler which provides the perfect colour pallet that a designer would want.

This article has ben featured in: http://garmahis.com 

Numix Artwork Themes for Linux and Android

Numix (Not Just Yet Another Theme Suit) is  a theme project that has a collection of beautiful themes and artwork for Linux and Android OS. It looked really beautiful and so I decided to try it out on my Ubuntu 14.04 LTS . Numix has a variety of GTK themes, icon themes, fabulous wallpapers and additional artwork. Some of them are free while the others can be purchased. In the end, it all comes down to making your desktop look illustrious and prominent.  I have tried  various themes and wallpaper combination.

Here is a picture of my desktop screen before Numix.

Before Numix

Its the same stock Theme which is pretty alright, and  below is the screen shots of desktop and file explorer with Numix circle theme and Name of the Doctor wallpaper.

after Numix

 

numix stuff2

numix stuff

 

This kind of reminds you of Android Lollipop doesn’t it? Well that is how it feels to me. Having a change once in a while has a refreshing effect on the system user.

There are two other themes on Numix the touch theme and the shine theme but unfortunately they aren’t supported on 14.04.  If you have gotten it to work then share the method in the comments below!

 

A TECH STARTUP THAT CAN MOBILIZE YOUR PHYSICAL STORE

 

Rista Mobility – A Promising Tech Startup Helping Retail Stores of India Go Mobile.

Today, for any consumer-oriented business to succeed requires a mobile-friendly retail
presence. Richard Lowe, the managing director and head of retail and wholesale at
Barclays, acknowledged that many retailers continued to be wary of mobile but argued
that they needed to embrace it. He said, “With almost three quarters of consumers
using their mobile devices whilst out and about, ignoring this trend would be a missed
opportunity. Retailers must cater for the mobile consumer in order to remain relevant.”
Mobile commerce is the fastest growing segment of the retail sector and 70% of the
shoppers prefer to use their smartphones for shopping online.

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Rista Mobility is a mobile technology company that has fully embraced the mobile
concept in retail and is delivering the most advanced mobile solutions to global retailers
at a very affordable price. Rista has ambitious vision of bridging the gap between online
and physical retail channels, and enabling retail businesses to have omni-channel
presence. Rista Mobility offers a global retail sales platform designed based on mobilefirst
approach and runs entirely on mobile phones and tablets. Company offers Rista
Sales, which is a highly customizable mobile point-of-sale (POS) solution that could be
used by any types of business, including retail product stores, and service businesses
such as restaurants, cafes, salons and florists. It is the only high-performance and multistore
management POS software on Android. Rista Sales serves as the central point of
control for retail businesses to manage everything including sales transactions,
inventory, analytics, and consumer engagement. Rista Sales also connects businesses
with their customers through a free consumer app -Rista Market app. A business can
share orders, sales receipts and product catalog built on Rista Sales with consumers
through this app. This offers huge opportunity to retail businesses to build customer
loyalty, engage customers in the sales process, run sales with digital receipts, share live
orders with customers and soon create targeted marketing campaigns and run loyalty
programs.

Rista Mobility has another amazing product Rista Market, a global retail marketplace
that runs entirely on mobile devices. Rista Market connects retail businesses to their
customers, help them grow their sales and build loyal customer base. The businesses
including retail stores and restaurants can use Rista Sales app on subscription basis to
maintain catalog, perform sales transactions in-store and receive orders from Rista
Market. The consumers or buyers use a free Rista Market app to browse catalogs and
place orders. The orders created on Rista Market are made available to businesses in
real-time and with the option to edit in consultation with the customer or accept the
orders before processing it. Moreover, the orders received for delivery will come with a
GPS location of the delivery address. Unlike traditional marketplaces that charge high
sales commission and controls the product listings, Rista Market offers an interesting
model with no middle-man and a pure technology platform for retail businesses to grow
their sales and engage customers.

This kind of advanced solutions have been considered just for the large retail
organizations so far but Rista has made it possible for even a small mom and pop store
to deploy such sophistication in their sales and consumer interactions. Rista Market is
perfect for retail products and services businesses, food ordering and catering services,
and for distributors and wholesalers. Rista Market will empower the brick-and-mortar
retail businesses with latest mobile technology to engage consumers and to succeed in
the current omni-channel retail environment.

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You can learn more about the company and its solutions  from our website ristaapps.com. The
company has its offices in the USA for North America and European markets, and in
India to serve the emerging markets in Southeast Asia. It plans to grow rapidly by
getting a large number of businesses and consumers on its sales platform.

You can download free apps for android phones from the play store from here and here.

More amazing startups can be discovered by browsing about them in the right kind of websites that provides a list of startups in and around your area.

Possibilities of Internet of Things

Most of know or at least heard about the Internet of Things. It is the combining of any device possible to the Internet so that it can communicate with other devices or with a person by the use of other devices like a smart phone. Internet of Things also provides an option for the devices to talk among themselves without any human intervention. Some might have just realised  the gravity of this situation. Some might wonder that, “this is something cool!”, while others might see the good this can do. This does raise  a few serious questions whose answer is relative to each person because morality is a human character that cannot be quantified.

Is the Internet of Things (IoT) a good thing?  Can it cause any harm? does the bad outweigh the good? If it doesn’t as of yet, then till what point can we tolerate it? Are there things being kept from the general public? Now, these are questions to which answer is needed.   The Internet is a treasure trove of information. A regular survey would give you hundreds or probably thousands of good things it can do and probably a few hundred disadvantages. But this doesn’t suffice. As the IoT develops, many minds will be working on it and the combined effort might lead to a singular disaster. Thus, the disadvantages found online regarding the Internet of Things is not adequate. It requires the people’s wildest imagination to  bring an account of what bad can happen. Once we have an idea as to what can go wrong, we would then make it a point to question scenarios that might occur when the major corporations  or Internet Giants.  They could definitely come up with products and solutions claiming that it was things that people were waiting for and that they are happy to be a part of it.  But if they were telling the truth the claim would be, “here is something that seems really cool,  you are not worthy of realising what it truly is, so just buy it!”

Now, these are questions to which answer is needed as soon as possible.   The Internet is a treasure trove of information. A regular survey would give you hundreds or probably thousands of good things it can do and probably a few hundred disadvantages. But this doesn’t suffice. As the IoT develops, many minds will be working on it and the combined effort might lead to a singular disaster. Thus, the disadvantages found online regarding the Internet of Things is not adequate. It requires the people’s wildest imagination to  bring an account of what bad can happen. Once we have an idea as to what can go wrong, we would then make it a point to question scenarios that might occur when the major corporations  or Internet Giants.  They could definitely come up with products and solutions claiming that it was things that people were waiting for and that they are happy to be a part of it.  But if they were telling the truth the claim would be, “here is something that seems really cool,  you are not worthy of realising what it truly is, so just buy it!”

I would like to make it clear that I too see the ocean of benefits that it could give us. Internet of Things  is required for businesses to grow. It can give us medical equipments that can save lives when human intervention is not possible. It can help devices to talk to each other and solve the problems themselves. IoT can make a group of  devices to monitor critical moments, adjusting themselves the changing environment and alert the concerned authority of any potential danger. BUT, what about the downfall?  When profits have a higher priority over potential disaster, I am sure that the signs of danger will be disregarded  until ignorance is no longer an option.  I feel the right thing to do would not be throwing this ideology or  concept away, but to question and reason every bit of it. To think about the choices made and the consequence, it brings with it. It should be kept it  mind, for when disaster catastrophe strikes we neither have another planet to escape nor a time machine.

I feel it is necessary for people to have a speculative mind. The Internet of Things is a rising trend, on its way to become a part of people’s personal lives. It should be made sure that it doesn’t cause any further harm to our being or to what’s left of our privacy. Well, these were my views, I would be glad to know what others think about it!

 

Image source: SOGETI labs 

No need of Invites for One Plus One Anymore

I am sure you would have heard about the Invitation Strategy used by One Plus, to sell it phone One . But, here is what I think is its true meaning.

The success of exclusive sales on an e-commerce platforms is well known. Flipkart with the Moto and Xiaomi  smartphones ( well, at least till recently) and the Amazon with the One plus has shown us the true sense of success in sales. Not only did it allow a new kind of market to be born but paved a path for the manufacturers to reduce cost and thus benefiting the consumer. I consider this to be a brilliant strategy. It is a simple idea. Use an already existing user base to sell items ( smartphones in this case), that the users would require and at a price that they can afford. To make it more interesting, sell it exclusively on one particular platform and this would  create an illusion to most of the buyers. The buyer would feel that they were possessing a product that is unique. But sometimes, even this level of satisfaction among the buyers isn’t enough. Specially when there is a chance that people might think that such products sold are no longer worth its value. And thus born is another brilliant idea.

The concept of purchase only by an invitation holder isn’t new. It is done when the supply is very limited when compared to the demand. But in the case of our One Plus One, the invitation strategy is just a way to create an artificial sense of supply shortage and an increasing demand. This way they could not only restrict their sales as they wanted to, but also bring about a huge turnout. The buyers would then think that they have got an opportunity to purchase something that is prime and feel more satisfied than ever. while in the actual sense, all that is being done is things being played around.  I totally agree that the One Plus One is a phenomenal phone, but my perspective here is the way this phone is sold and not about the phone itself.  I don’t think there is any other way this kind of sales could make sense.  But if there were, I would be more than happy to know!

Coming to the present, it is the finale. One Plus has pulled out its final act, the prestige. It has declared that no more invitations are required and that all can buy the phone directly.  Now, all the people who felt left out due to not having the invites or  thought of the invite process as an obstacle they didn’t want to endure , can blindly buy this phone without a second thought.  One Plus have opened the floodgates and those deprived will finally get their share. From a business point of view, I consider this to be a remarkable strategy.  It has the beauty of  using the Human Psychology to one’s advantage.

But now that this is done, I want to wait and see. I wonder what they have next in mind, for the buyer’s satisfaction with this kind of strategy has died down a little.

Image source : Ndtv Gdgets

What you need to know about Ripple

In the past few years, a new type of digital currency has appeared, one that has managed to take the world by storm thanks to its interesting set of features and benefits that it provides. Named Ripple, this is a great open source payment system and digital currency which was created with the sole purpose of providing a wonderful way to perform payments without being controlled by a financial institution and being subject to fees.

Why was Ripple created?

The network was created with the main purpose of having a way to move money freely, without having to pay any fees or things like that. Ripple strives to create a method to decentralized digital currencies and provide a professional approach towards digital economy.

How does it function?

Unlike other payment systems that were designed to create a loyal customer base and use it in the best possible way, Ripple was designed with other things in mind. The idea behind it was to create a decentralized method of sharing money freely between multiple payment systems, and this is something you are going to appreciate at all costs.

Who created Ripple?

Ripple has been created by the company named OpenCoin. The people behind this company have a lot of experience when it comes to digital currencies and the financial market, which surely makes them the best persons to work on providing a wonderful experience in the world of digital currencies.

Is Ripple exactly like bitcoin?

There are a few differences between the two, but both of them are a digital currency, both of them have a limited number of units that can be mined and used, they can both be transferred freely. The best part about that is they combine together in order to take the digital currency market to the next level, something that was indeed supposed to be expected in the end.

Are the two rivals?

No, instead Ripple can be seen as a way to complete Bitcoin rather than competing with it. Both these networks are growing fast and they need a good, professional way that can be used in order to get the job done fast and with complete efficiency.

Benefits of Ripple for bitcoin users

What makes Ripple better than bitcoin is definitely the fact that it provides expedited transactions and at the same time it comes with an increase in stability that is very good and functional. Not only that, but the system doesn’t have a problem with block confirmations and transaction confirmation appears very fast.

How to Go about Writing a Product Description on an ecommerce Website

“First impression last” is a common phrase that applied especially in making an e-commerce description. These descriptions are essential as it communicates value, capture people’s curiosity and let people switch from their browsing mode in to paying customers quickly. It is not good if you are going to give everything at your product description. However, this do have an important role after all. Making sure that you have included all the essential information will lead you into a successful product selling. Here are the following ways on how you are going to write product description on an ecommerce description.

Have Concentration with your Target Audience

In writing a product description, set your goal within your mind that your target is your first main concern. Having a full understanding about your customers and letting them feel connected/related into your description may lead them to buy your products.

Introduce Features and Benefits

The features and benefits are essential in making a product description. Why? Simply because these are what people’s main concern in buying a product. It totally catches the attention most especially your target audience. Including the features will tell about what could be the possible benefit of your product and the benefits itself makes the feature useful in introducing the product.

Make every words sounds Natural

There are different kinds of people and this only means that among all of your website visitor, those who can read your product description might have his own interpretation. Your description must sound naturally. There should be limitation with your flowering words. Be aware that too much flowering words in your description might just give your customer the doubt in buying your product.

Make it Simple

Having a simple description is enough to get the attention of your potential buyers. Sometimes, the simplicity of every sentences you made defines the whole interesting part in your product. The simpler it is, the more it is very easy to read and understand by the readers.

Show Off a Story

Let your potential buyers create a wide imagination with your description. You must let them put their selves into the idea of their condition in using your product after buying your product. Weaving a good story in your product description is one of the best way of encouraging them.

Make Use of Social Proof

If your visitors are still unsure about the product that they really wanted to purchase, they will surely look for suggestions on what/ which is to buy. They usually trust those reviews with highest number of positive feedback from the recent buyers of the product. It is a good social proof for your customers and there are more social proof which you can use in writing your product description.

The way you write a product description on an ecommerce may allow you to determine not just your skills in writing a product description but also your strategy as one of the best online marketer. Try to apply these basic knowledge in writing an effective product description if you want to succeed in online marketing world.

A vision of Digital India

A connection between two regions can be achieved by constructing a bridge. The two regions might be different worlds on their own, but the bridge provides a path to merge them, to make them one, to provide an opportunity for the people from either of the worlds to explore newer verticals and achieve substantial growth. Well, here in this world of ours which we call “India”, the two regions are the government and the people. Many factors like illiteracy in rural areas, illogical belief systems, ignorance of the urban youth separate the government from most of the people in our country.  This is why we need a bridge called “E-governance” with “technology” acting as the pillars supporting that bridge. Once such a structure is setup successfully, I believe that we can easily achieve the vision of #DigitalIndia .

Generally, people in India are either misinformed or less-informed and either of them is equally dangerous. This is why I feel that we must utilize the willingness of many others, who could help connect the masses and educate them to self-sustain and be fully informed about the government, the services and benefits that they are provided with or those which can be availed.  So, I would like to share my opinions and thoughts on how technology along with people can help in creating a Digital India that can form a leading factor of the country’s growth.

The vision of digital India involves using technology paired with the internet to make people’s work easier with respect to the government services. It would also integrate various systems in the Government, business and customer environments to enhance the quality of information/service provided.

Firstly, I’ll talk about the rural areas that dominate India with villages and small towns. Most of the people here are farmers, masons, etc. where the literacy levels are low. Technology can be very helpful here. Smart phones are taking over the mobile markets and they are available at very low prices, and thus have succeeded in percolating to most of the people in these rural areas. So, a person in their community with some educational background and knowledge about the internet can educate others in the community about the internet and using it for searching and gaining the required information. Organisations such as Intel with their “Digital Skills for India” and Microsoft with their rural development initiatives have come up with solution to various problems like healthcare, business  and financial informative courses in multiple different local languages. But in my opinion, there could be other things added to this. Since using mobile phones requires only reading ability and experience in using it, even people with less or no education will understand how to operate it to get information regarding a particular topic. Following are a few points that I think can be implememted:

  • A universal application can be created that initially requires the people to select their areas of interest followed by their preferred language. Here Universal means that it should be built on an open platform that can support collaboration.
  • Once an open collaborative platform exists, people who know a language can become contributors to make the application available in not just a few languages but cover much more than that. Here technology can be used as a community tool for collaboration.
  • Panchayats can hold mandatory sessions to educate people on the government services provided and how it can be availed. This would require a minimalist approach to design the applications and mobile websites so that only the required information can be delivered easily without much of a hassle. Importance should be given to how the information is presented, because if it is complicated then the people will start rejecting it, irrespective of what information is being provided.

Also, e-governance can be enhanced by combining the various wings of the government. This would mean that we can integrate the various services and secure it in the cloud (for example), so that it can be accessible from anywhere.

Here is an example: If the systems used by agriculture department can be integrated with the education board for farming and also weather prediction board, and  if this integrated system can be enabled as a cloud service, then, in villages, the educated people can be employed for using these services to provide all the required information regarding agriculture, the weather analysis and education to farmers or other community members, all from a single service. It can then be used to analyse how this integrated service is working when compared to individual distributed services and this can form a quantitative measure of growth.

As an example in the urban cities of our country, a cloud service that integrates the development board of the centre and the development board of the state can enable every user to login and find out what the government is spending on and how the governments at these two levels are tied up.

Here are a few ways I feel technology can help e-governance in the urban world to create a digitized ecosystem:

  • Modern schools are shifting to tablets and PCs to inculcate practical based learning. And so, at the education level, the informational wing of e-governance can use technologies such as android applications or standalone software to provide interactive training to students regarding the various fundamentals of our government, right from our constitution to the government setup, or even to the present working scenarios. The interactive way of learning will not only engage students but could help in cultivating an idea growing habit among them. And thus a platform can be created where young minds submit their new ideas and viewpoints which can be analysed to provide key insights into the effect of government on the young minds.
  • Once the integrated systems are in place and are providing a wide variety of information, a forum can be provided for the people where they can login with their accounts and provide inputs on many of the issues, work or services taken up by the government. Thus here again, the analytics and mining technologies can be used to obtain a sentiment analysis of the people regarding an issue and this forms a feedback to the government about what the people feel about that issue or a service and also indirectly gets the people involved in the decision making process.
  • Technology can help people to get involved in government projects. Mobile applications can be used with the e-governance platform providing location based information about ongoing project near to a person. The app can then list out the work that needs to be done and the skillset required by the person to do it. People having the skillset can then volunteer in those projects nearby to them whenever they can. This way, community participation increases and the work can get done faster. Weather it may be cleaning a place, or a river, or spreading information about a new development plan or a project or to educate people on topics that concern them need voluntary participation and thus technology can help in achieving it faster. In this case the e-governance platform acts as a mediator or an information provider.

I think that achieving the vision of Digital India is possible through sustained and combined efforts of the organisations, people and the government. But the more challenging aspect is holding the achievement of being “Digital India”. Since many people tend to get ignorant very soon or think they don’t have time, the efforts put in might not reach its true worth. One way to hold what we would have achieved  is to make sure that technology will be used as a part of e-governance to helps people during their day to day life or probably during their work.

One way this can be realised is by using real time automated support systems to help the people of this country. Let me give a few examples:

  • If a farmer has to purchase fertilisers for his land and if he is unsure as to what to buy, he can use this government service portal (which is a part of e-governance), where the portal provides a set of fertilisers along with the damage it does and the crops it is used for. So here, the farmer can enter the amount of fertiliser that he thinks he needs, and the crop he wants to grow and the size of his farm. One these inputs are given the portal, in real time it should provide the required results . If he then changes one of the input parameters then the changes in results must also be shown instantly.
  • Senior citizens might be confused about the benefits given to them with loans or interest on a bank account. So here again, a real time system can allow them to use this helping service thorough a simple interface to click on what they are looking for and get the results. They can change the parameters to see how the benefits will vary and take an appropriate decision.

These are just some examples of using technology to keep the vision of “Digital India” alive and going.  And some or all of the opinions I have shared above might help to make full utilisation of e-governance.

I consider myself to be a responsible citizen of India and I look forward to participate and share the advancement that are being implemented in the field of e-governance. I would like to thank Intel for their support to achieve this broad vision of #DigitalIndia.

For more information about Intel and its other awesome stuff, head over to http://www.intel.in or click here.

#DigitalIndia

Internet of things: impact on business and adapting to the new world

Introduction

Internet of things (IoT) is the interconnection of physical objects in our surrounding using wireless technology so that they can automatically interact with each other or directly to a remote user without any human intervention. Physical objects with embedded computing and wireless infrastructure (like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth) can be directly configured, while non-smart devices can be attached an artificial smart unit to include them in the IOT network.

The “things” in the IoT refers to devices like the heart monitor in a patient, to smart locking system on a door to sensors in vehicles that measure and warn low tyre pressure. The devises can now communicate with each other or be controlled remotely. This is possible because each device is provided with an IP addresses so they can be identified uniquely.

Why should this be relevant to anyone? Well, to answer that we have to see where the IoT is heading. Researchers, developers and innovators are trying to form a global network for IoT to remotely access any device over the network. They are moving towards using smart-hubs which helps by connecting devices not only over Wi-Fi but Bluetooth as well.

The Impact of IoT on business

Until the development and efficient usage of IoT, businesses had independent work model for each of the tasks that had to be performed. This meant an independent database, computer software to solve the task and some were provided with web applications and mobile app for easier use. But still each of these was point solutions and integration was difficult. For example, security issues on mobile transaction would requires the organisation to purchase security management software and for security issues on computer involved purchasing another management package solutions and integration of these wherever possible was difficult.

In the wake of these difficulties, IoT presented solutions that would greatly impact the way business tasks could be integrated and centralised and made the whole business network smarter. IoT provided economical and efficient ways to seamlessly integrate hardware, software and people.
Usage of IoT in an enterprise would mean:

  • Centralised databases which could be used to control various tasks and automate device to device communication where ever possible. Example would be sensors talking to the central database on decision support, and decide to either report or handle situations on its own.
  • Network control and management of manufacturing equipment, asset and situation management, or manufacturing process control bring the IoT within the realm on industrial applications and smart manufacturing as well. The IoT intelligent systems enable rapid manufacturing of new products, dynamic response to product demands, and real-time optimization of manufacturing production and supply chain networks, by networking machinery, sensors and control systems together.
  • Integration of various software and management packages would be allowing the enterprise to automate process controls, operator tools and service information systems to optimize plant safety and security.
  •  Smart industrial management systems can also be integrated with the Smart Grid, thereby enabling real-time energy optimization. Measurements, automated controls, plant optimization, health and safety management, and other functions are provided by a large number of networked sensors.
  • Field of medicine would also get included with digital health, by monitoring patients virtually in real time and remotely by using sensors in wearable devices.
  • One of the largest deployment of IoT is smart cities, where governments are using the existent infrastructure in cities to get it connected using IoT. This is done to better manage the cities and systems. This would mean that businesses and companies in the field of security and management can get a new way to reach and monitor their clients and also get on board new clients for very less costs because the infrastructure already exists. Songdo, a city in South Korea is the first city to be connected by IoT and is now a smart city.

What can the businesses do to adapt?

Businesses can now purchase products or services with are made for an IoT environment. This is possible mainly because of the Industrial partnership. Traditional IT vendors team up with telecom providers and semiconductor manufacturers to create products suited for the IoT environment. So if a company is looking to use IoT then they would have to integrate the output product of these kinds of partnership into their working. And, if the company is trying to sell a product in the field of IoT, they must be looking for suitable partners or suppliers so that they can customize their offerings to be easily integrated with other existing IoT systems and it should work seamlessly.

Examples for some of the partnerships are:

  • Samsung – SAP partnership
  • Apple – IBM
  • General Electric , Cisco

These partnerships not only make user work much easier and integrated with everything else, they open the door for certain types of clients which weren’t possible before. Businesses must also lead a joint innovation centre to create products for customers they businesses couldn’t cater to on their own.
Businesses would require addressing the challenges that come with the concept of IoT which are:

  • Scalability: the scalability issues are arising for the number of devices that can connect and the number of devices that can concurrently operate or can be serviced.
  • Availability: availability involves recoverability and reliability. This is a challenge considering that the IoT systems would operate on the cloud and high demands might raise problems.
  • Security: this is very important because, with the IoT, the traditional security and Firewall features would not be sufficient as a controlled access to trust access.
  • Manageability: most of the devices are not managed, it’s only the computers which are managed and cell phones which are semi managed, so a different kind of manageability has to developed and put to work for interoperability.

Finally, the business will require and need to produce end to end services taking advantage of the Cheap, ubiquitous connectivity in this age of IoT.

Note: This post is my gig from Fiverr