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Project Things by Mozilla and the Web Thing API

From: Benjamin Francis <bfrancis@mozilla.com>
Date: Tue, 4 Jul 2017 19:27:27 +0100
Message-ID: <CAKQmVV9fqExLb_G+=9mbMr5NmR3jbqtyaDFZ+7WrXvjNXf4_4Q@mail.gmail.com>
To: public-wot-ig <public-wot-ig@w3.org>, public-wot-wg@w3.org
Hi all,

I wanted to give this group a heads up that last week we announced
<https://hacks.mozilla.org/2017/06/building-the-web-of-things/> Project
Things <http://iot.mozilla.org/> by Mozilla. This includes an open source Web
of Things gateway <http://iot.mozilla.org/gateway/> implementation and a
draft Web Thing API <http://iot.mozilla.org/wot/>.

You can read more about the rationale
<http://iot.mozilla.org/specification/> behind our specification on the
website but the basic idea is to take a more pragmatic and concrete
approach to the Web of Things using existing web technologies, with a JSON
based Web Thing Description format and a REST + WebSockets API. All of
our source
code <https://github.com/mozilla-iot/> is on GitHub.

The Web Thing Description
<http://iot.mozilla.org/wot/#web-thing-description> format we've been
working on is not dissimilar to the current draft
<https://w3c.github.io/wot-thing-description> by the W3C Web of Things
Working Group, but with less of a focus on RDF and the semantic web and
more focus on a concrete JSON encoding which web developers can get started
with straight away. (In this way it has some things in common with the
W3C's Web App Manifest <https://www.w3.org/TR/appmanifest/> specification
which went through several complex iterations at the System Applications
Working Group <https://www.w3.org/2012/sysapps/> before a much simpler
approach ultimately proved successful.)

The Web Thing Types <http://iot.mozilla.org/wot/#web-thing-types> are
designed to be extensible with JSON-LD
<http://iot.mozilla.org/wot/#extensibility-with-json-ld>, but this is
secondary to defining the core description format. The Web Thing REST API
<http://iot.mozilla.org/wot/#web-thing-rest-api> and Web Thing WebSocket API
<http://iot.mozilla.org/wot/#web-thing-websocket-api> have similar use
cases to the W3C WoT Working Group's Scripting API
<https://w3c.github.io/wot-scripting-api/>, but again the focus is on
defining a concrete programmable interface using existing web technologies
rather than an abstract scripting API.

We have slightly different views regarding the approach to standardisation
than the one described by the current WoT WG Charter (as communicated via
our formal objections), but I hope we can continue to have productive
conversations - particularly around the Web Thing Description format where
I think we have a lot of common ground. I would particularly like to credit
the Web Thing Model <http://model.webofthings.io/> member submission from
members of the WoT IG and Web of Things community which did a lot to
inspire our work and we're keen to hear from others with a like-minded
pragmatic approach to this space.

We're really just getting started in IoT at Mozilla and we're excited to
learn more through our open source implementation and through working
closely with the hacker/maker/developer community. We look forward to
receiving feedback <https://github.com/mozilla-iot/wot/issues>.

Best Wishes

Received on Tuesday, 4 July 2017 18:28:02 UTC

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