The biggest ever CES 2015 is finally over, and all those attendees are just getting over the Vegas buzz. At the end, several industry trends were observed, and one of them particularly stood out at me.
The Internet of Things, also simply known as IoT.
Samsung and the likes touted that their products will be “connected” and “talk to one another” 24/7. They painted the future of our lives with “smart everything” from watches to refrigerators to cars. It’s the future that the Jetsons would envy.
But some opinion leaders quickly pointed out that these smart connected products are just too expensive to be part of our everyday lives. At least for now anyway. And I tend to agree.
Most, if not all, companies are focusing on the “utilitarian side” of IoT. How all these products can work together to make our lives easier. But the fact is that the complexities of these products make them expensive and out of reach for most of us, which interestingly goes against the whole utilitarian perspective.
So, that made me think. What other ways can IoT impact our lives? And an answer came quickly. There actually is a “side” of IoT that is exciting: The creative side.
The IoT technology allows for people to connect via the Internet and remotely control things, which also means remotely create things, together. Imagine a 3D printer connected to the Internet. What if it can be controlled by commands that are the results of aggregated Twitter hashtag votes? An entire class of students can participate and tweet their favorite hashtag commands, and the most tweeted hashtag activates the 3D printer to print the first stage of whatever it is. Then, another whole class of students can tweet-vote to print the next stage. Then another class. Then another class. At the end, you have this piece of work that is truly collaborative in a unique way. Every student gets to participate in real-time, thanks to the IoT technology. This would be even more impressive if these classes were located all over the world, which of course is very possible.
Here’s another scenario. Artists from different locations control various creative tools remotely over the Internet and work on a canvas together, creating a collaborative artwork. Those who are at the gallery where the canvas is located would be treated with a one-of-a-kind creative process happening right in front of them in real-time.
Of course, there are limitless possibilities in utilizing the IoT technology in the creative realm. And that is exciting. Beyond the convenience of your possessions being smart and connected, the creative IoT technology – if we can call it that – can open up a whole new world!
The Internet of Things for utility? Yes.
The Internet of Things for creativity? Now, that’s exciting.