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Comment Re:This pretty much sums up IoT ... (Score 1) 149

Internet of things is a thing. I've been following the subject of IoT for some time. In the beginning It didn't really look like a thing to me either and that's perhaps because just few months ago it didn't have enough of a shape to call it a thing or I just didn't know enough about it.

In my books, I call something technology if it comprises of set of problems and solutions to those problems. Here's what IoT problems (and solutions) are:

1) Measuring values in physical world and sometimes changing physical world as response to commands (sensors and actuators)
2) Transporting measurements to computing centers where they can be analysed and acted upon (wired and wireless communication hardware and protocols)
3) Power independence for measuring devices (hardware that consumes low power where needed or harvests power from surrounding sources)
4) Information storage and processing (usually cloud storage and data pipelines like queues or streams followed by services that process information and/or store it)
5) All problems above involve additional dimension, everyone's favorite these days - scalability (massive number of devices collecting data frequently, sending it over through communication channels for processing in cloud)

Here's just one simple idea of how IoT can make city better. Imagine a smart waste disposal bin used for compostable waste. It collects information about how much waste is in it and sends the information over to Smart City's cloud "application". Every morning this application forms a map of places where garbage disposal truck needs to visit to collect garbage. It also allocates enough trucks for the work and optimizes their route for the day. This may reduce cost of fuel and reduce truck maintenance cost by optimizing number of trucks used daily. Citizens are happy because their compostable garbage isn't left to rotten (and stink) for long time.

Further more, data analytics team may use the information to extract patterns. For example, how much waste is generated in certain part of the city on a football game day or on bad weather day and use it for truck fleet management.

Of course, this example may be solved in some other way or may not reduce costs at all, but that may also be considered as problem in IoT - how much the solution costs and is it worth it and ultimately, how to reduce the cost and complexity of application so that IoT is more often worth it.

To summarize, IoT is a thing. It may not be necessary in many solutions but in some it probably is good option or will be. Still, for sure, it's a thing.

Comment Re:Greetings from Argentina (Score 1) 294

Having big inflation and wild currency value fluctuations is not normal and requires identifying the source of the problem and detailed plan of action. Without that I would say the situation is quite desperate. Going "cashless" sounds like plan and I would agree, not a good one.

Your post suggest the government has the plan and its execution is yielding positive results. Is that so or are people getting used to despair because they know how to navigate it?

Comment 13 years later (Score 3, Interesting) 166

It's a rainy night. Mulder is sitting in an empty low-lit bar. His head rests on his arms. There's few empty glasses on bar table in front of him. Broody country tones fill the space.

Scully walks in with intention. She spots Mulder and shakes the rain off her coat. He doesn't see her as she walks over. She stops right beside him.

Scully: "Your online dating profile says you're blond."
Mulder (chuckles): "It's funny, you sound just like someone I knew long time a..."

He lifts his head off of his arms and meets her eyes. His face expression changes into bewilderment.

Mulder (whispers): "Scully?!"
Scully: "Hello, cowboy. We're back!"

(intro titles cut in, followed by commercials. Twitter explodes, Facebook explodes, Instagram explodes)

Comment Why such dumb algorithm? (Score 1) 218

With Facebook being all about making sense of data for advertising purpose you would expect they would come up with some smart algorithm that would figure out the actual context behind posts. I'd expect Facebook to know when people are happy, sad, angry, drunk, silly etc. when they post and use that information not only for targeted advertising but for the benefit of their users.

Comment Re:It's a fail - almost certainly (Score 1) 334

Since when was 1981 in the seventies?

Well yeah, it was shot early eighties, and it started screening in 1982 but there was *a lot* going on before they started shooting, so the whole idea for the movie developed in the seventies.

Anyway, you're right - I therefore correct my previous statement by replacing "seventies" with "early eighties".

Comment It's a fail - almost certainly (Score 1) 334

It will be so easy to screw up this one. Some stories fit only in books. I guess they can base movie on Neuromancer, but that's the whole different set. Just like Blade Runner - great movie but different story focus from the original book. And that one was made in seventies. You know, before theaters were filled up by Fast And Furious 1 to 16. It's a fail - almost certainly.

If you can't learn to do it well, learn to enjoy doing it badly.