W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-wot-ig@w3.org > January 2016

3. WoT Thing needs to have meta Band

From: David Janes <davidjanes@davidjanes.com>
Date: Wed, 27 Jan 2016 04:39:53 -0500
Message-ID: <CACp1KyMNgPH7nASgaU2wbVjSN61xqcVrKhzdpqDZJyfyc-qa-g@mail.gmail.com>
To: "t2trg@irtf.org" <t2TRG@irtf.org>, public-wot-ig@w3.org
Formatted version here:

Points to be made:

   - Facets: AC / Furnace / Thermostat combo
   - Schema.org properties, what if we want a Model Number?
   - Meta or Model?


For this example, we'll be considering the Nest Thermostat. The Nest
Thermostat has (let's say):

   - it controls the AC
   - it controls the Furnace
   - it monitors Temperature
   - it monitors Humidity

What's the "type" of this Thing?

As in:

    readonly attribute DOMString type;

Is it a:

   - Nest
   - AC Control
   - Heating Control
   - Climate Control (in General)

My answer would be "it's several of these" and in particular, the last

The "type" of a Thing cannot be a single value. Furthermore, the word
"type" is heavily overloaded so we propose the term "facets".

So the Nest thermostat would have

We propose the following solution:

   - use a "meta" band to store this type of data
   - use "facets" (within the meta) to describe the "type" of a Thing

e.g. the Nest Thing would have (at least) the following facets:

   - "Climate Control"
   - "AC"
   - "Heating"

Since we want to be Semantic, we should use URLs (/QNames) for concepts,
giving us the facets


Which can be looked up here:


Additional Data

The WoT Model defines the following meta-data like items.

readonly attribute DOMString id;
readonly attribute DOMString type;
readonly attribute DOMString name;

What if we want to have an image associated with the metadata. How about
*two* images? What about the manufacture name, or URL, or the Model code?
How about a description?
Schema.org Vocabulary

Schema.org provides a well supported semantic vocabulary. Of particular
interest to the IoT community is:

   - https://schema.org/Thing
   - https://schema.org/Product

There is *no need* to make new definitions for common concepts: the work
has been done for us.
Meta v Model

Note that you might say "why are you using metadata to describe this rather
than the model". In fact, you probably want it in both, e.g.

   - the model has the initial definitions
   - when a Thing is instantiated, it copies the initial definitions from
   the model to the meta.
   - the meta can be modified during use; the model is basically static

Considering the WeMo Switch again. Out of the box its facet is
"iot-facet:switch". However, if we connect it to a lamp then we really want
to consider this *to be a lamp*, e.g. its facet should become
Putting it all together

Instead of variables on a Thing, we propose that there be a band (i.e. a
JSON-like dictionary) that stores all the meta data.

This would look very much like this:

    "iot:thing-id": "<the thing id>",
    "iot:facet": [
    "schema:name": "My Super Cool Nest Thermostat",
    "schema:manufacturer": "https://nest.com",
    "schema:model": "Nest",
    "schema:mpn": "......",
    "schema:productID": "......",

You'll note that this looks very much like the istate and ostate bands,
even though its purpose is very different. Code wise it's much the same

thing.meta.get("schema:name")   ## "My Super Cool Nest Thermostat"
thing.meta.get("iot:facet")     ## [ ... ]
thing.meta.set("schema:name", "David's Thermostat")

and so forth
Received on Wednesday, 27 January 2016 09:40:47 UTC

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