Chris Ackroyd on the Internet of Things

10/03/2010 - 09:51

"Having sensors that relay information in everything we own, use, wear, touch and play with has some serious implications for privacy.  Where will the information go once it has left the tags?  Could anybody walking down the street stick out an antena that scans passers by, works out where they’ve been and their habits, and then tell the world?  Not great news for the likes of messrs Terry and Cole.  Or will shops use it to work out what we’re going to buy as we walk through the front door and place the relevant adverts right in front of us?Potentially yes, but as Rob van Kranenburg stated there is less chance of manipulation if the algorithms and software in the devices are opened up and made available for all to see.  This would allow developers to produce programmes that could be downloaded to talk back to us from the data that they’re receiving from RFIDs.  This way we could play each other at everyone’s own game and the benefits would be cancelled out.  This way the focus would move to manipulating the devices for social benefits.  Environmental causes would benefit from increased efficiency derived through the constant stream of information that objects feed to each other.  For example, could a clothes tag let a washing machine know it’s dry and stop the cycle early?"Read more.