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Harwin Mixtek EETImes Europe third page Feb 15.qxd IoT data model fills a gap By Michael Koster The IPSO Alliance is High Reliability, Mixed Layout Connectors Datamate Mix-Tek is a high performance, high reliability, mixed layout system suited to high vibration environments. – 3 contact styles available in one housing – 3A Signal, up to 40A Power & 6gHz Coax – Wide range of layouts available from stock – Shock resistant For evaluation samples, CAD models and technical specifications go to: www.harwin.com/mix-tek making freely available a data model for creating interoperable smart objects geared for systems and software that are part of the Internet of Things. Technology for the Internet of Things is rapidly being developed and deployed using low-power physical networks such as 802.15.4 (Zigbee and Thread), low-power Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth Smart. The Internet Protocol (IP) layer has been extended to low-power and constrained devices through 6LowPAN, and through IP networking layers which are being developed for Zigbee and Bluetooth Smart. High level transport protocols and application layer support over IP are now available using several communication standards such as HTTP, CoAP, MQTT, and XMPP. These standards enable reuse of network technology by providing common connectivity and IP protocol compatibility. What they don’t provide is end-to-end interoperability between the devices themselves and the application software that manages and uses the devices. The result is vertically integrated systems that don’t allow easy third-party integration of devices and applications from different vendors. A level of interoperability is achieved only at the expense of tight vendor integration with specific partners. We need a common data model that can be used to enable diverse applications to communicate with diverse devices over diverse transport and application protocols. The IPSO Smart Objects for IoT aims to fill the gap with a consistent and reusable data model for use between devices and application software. This data model defines a set of data types and API structures that can be used across device types to enable them to interoperate with diverse application software components. To accomplish this, IPSO Smart Objects use Web-based design patterns and M2M standards to define a template for standard software objects. These Smart Objects represent the physical objects and building blocks which make up the IoT. Smart Objects use well known data types, web content formats like JSON, and Web style URL addressing. Standard URL templates and data formats enable the reuse of both device software and Web application software libraries across a wide range of IoT device types and applications. IPSO Smart Objects work with low-power devices on constrained networks, while supporting advanced IoT protocol features such as asynchronous notification and resource discovery, and thus are easily implemented using IETF CoAP. However, the Smart Objects data model is compatible with any protocol that supports URL addressing, and a small set of data types and content formats. Thus Smart Objects may be used with HTTP, MQTT, XMPP, SMS, and other base protocols as well as CoAP. Using IPSO Smart Objects makes it easier to bridge between different protocols. This enables the selection of optimum protocols and interfaces for different layers of the system. For example, CoAP or MQTT could be used to connect low-power devices to local networks. HTTP or XMPP could be used between gateways, Web services, and application software to support existing libraries and public APIs. A recently published “Smart Objects Starter Pack” is freely available on the Web site of the IPSO Alliance. It defines a set of 18 common IoT data objects such as temperature sensors, humidity sensors, 3-axis accelerometers, actuators, light controllers, and load controllers. In addition, it is easy to define new Smart Objects as needed to represent new and advanced device capabilities. These objects can be combined into more sophisticated devices with multiple capabilities, such as home appliances and smart city multi-sensors. Michael Koster works in IoT R&D at ARM, focused on application level interoperability and Internet standards. He is co-chair of the IPSO Smart Objects working group and works on IETF draft standards for IoT. www.electronics-eetimes.com Electronic Engineering Times Europe February 2015 33


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