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Re: Here’s the one thing someone needs to invent before the internet of things can take off

From: Erik Wilde <dret@berkeley.edu>
Date: Fri, 10 Apr 2015 10:02:49 -0700
Message-ID: <55280239.4060900@berkeley.edu>
To: Dave Raggett <dsr@w3.org>, "Lynn, James (Fortify on Demand Security Services)" <james.lynn@hp.com>, Public Web of Things IG <public-wot-ig@w3.org>
hello.

On 2015-04-10 05:51, Dave Raggett wrote:
> XML or JSON aren’t sufficient by themselves.  We need semantics, data
> formats, and bindings to scripting languages and protocols, e.g. HTTP,
> Web Sockets, CoAP, MQTT, STOMP and XMPP. We also need a consistent
> approach to security, for instance, see: Bruce Schneier’s  post: "The
> Internet of Things is Wildly Insecure — And Often Unpatchable"

well, if the goal is to have a "unified world model of things", which 
seems to be what dave is suggesting, then step 1 would be to define such 
a model, in some shape or form.

step 2 then would be to represent that model in some shape or form. that 
could be based any kind of metamodel that's around, including XML and 
JSON (and of course RDF as well). the value, though, would be in the 
shared model, and not in the chosen metamodel.

to me, the bigger question is whether it's a sensible mission to give 
ourselves. nobody doubts that if everybody spoke the same language 
(i.e., used the same conceptual model when talking about the world), 
then things would be a lot easier. that's true for machines as well as, 
very generally speaking, for humans.

however, so far we have many lessons of where this approach failed, but 
admittedly also some where it succeeded. often, the biggest problem is 
that conceptual models are always contextual and thus cannot be created 
independent from usage, and that the more users you have, the more 
contexts you have. another big problem is semantic drift, where concepts 
change over time in subtle and often unforeseeable ways.

so, my opinion is that trying to find/invent the "HTML for IoT" might 
end up being as successful as inventing the "HTML for Services" and the 
many other places where this has been tried: not very much. only because 
it would be nice if something existed does not necessarily mean that it 
is very likely that it will be easy or even possible to create it.

cheers,

dret.

-- 
erik wilde | mailto:dret@berkeley.edu  -  tel:+1-510-2061079 |
            | UC Berkeley  -  School of Information (ISchool) |
            | http://dret.net/netdret http://twitter.com/dret |
Received on Friday, 10 April 2015 17:03:15 UTC

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