IoT Tech Expo North America 2017: Highlights from the event in Silicon Valley

The North America 2017 event welcomes 10,500+ attendees to Silicon Valley!

Firstly, we’d like to thank all those who attended the IoT Tech Expo North America 2017 which returned to the Santa Clara Convention Center, CA for the final leg of the 2017 world series with an extended agenda, larger expo, brand new topics and two co-located events covering Blockchain and AI. The event attracted an audience of 10,500+ attendees with delegates from across North America and beyond to discuss the potential of IoT, Blockchain and AI across a number of industries, with top-level speakers sharing their expertise and experiences on the subject. We hope you found the event beneficial and made some new connections.

We would also like to say a huge thank you to our sponsors, speakers and exhibitors for their involvement in the event and for making it a fascinating and diverse two days.

The two-day event hosted 15 conference tracks, an exhibition, AI start-up incubator, IoT meetup and an evening of networking. On the first day speakers including NASA, Halliburton, Boeing, Bluetooth, Cisco, State of Nevada, Ford, Schneider Electric and many more took to the stage to explore IIoT, manufacturing,  connectivity, smart factories, data privacy, interoperability, security, and more.

Day 2 welcomed the new conference tracks ‘Smart Transportation & Cities’ and ‘IoT in Enterprise’ with speakers from Thyssenkrupp, Shell, Federal Trade Commission, Visa, State of Utah, Toyota, Aviva, Compare, Seattle Reign FC and more sharing their knowledge and experiences across a range of industries and verticals.

Here are a few pictures of the show and you can share yours with us using @IoTTechExpo

If you missed the event, you can catch up on all the sessions by purchasing a Sessions Material Pass which allows you to download all the presentations and recordings from over the two days. These will be available before December 7th and paid pass holders will be emailed their log-in details.

You can also let us know what you think via this short survey, and be entered into a draw to enter 2 x Ultimate Passes to a future event of your choice.

The IoT Tech Expo World Series will be returning in 2018 with shows taking place in London, Amsterdam and Silicon Valley. You can find out more and register for each below:

IoT Tech Expo Global – 18- 19 April 2018, Olympia London

IoT Tech Expo Europe – 1- 2 October 2018, RAI Amsterdam

IoT Tech Expo North America – 28- 29 November 2018, Santa Clara, Silicon Valley

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IoT Tech Expo

AT&T plans edge computing test zone for Silicon Valley

AT&T plans edge computing test zone for Silicon Valley

US telco AT&T plans facility where partners can run edge computing experiments in areas such as self-driving cars and augmented reality.

With edge computing now firmly finding its place in the IoT, US telco AT&T has laid down plans to open an edge computing test zone in the Bay Area of northern California in early 2018.

The zone itself is intended to be a cross between a proof of concept (PoC) lab and a developer hack shop. Initial reports suggest that AT&T will invite partners to test connected applications there, such as self-driving car software, drones and augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) innovations.

At launch, the zone will use a 4G LTE connection, but the engineering team behind the lab zone hope to upgrade to 5G once the final standards and equipment are ready.

Read more: AT&T fires up LTE-M network in the US

The next step

“Edge computing is the next step in the evolution of the network,” claimed Melissa Arnoldi, president of AT&T Technology and Operations. “As [fast] connectivity becomes ubiquitous, it also needs to become smart. Edge computing puts a supercomputer in your pocket, on your wrist, in your car, and right in front of your eyes.”

The company has suggested that edge computing’s core challenge is striking the right balance between functionality or power. For example, today, an AR app running on a smartphone can offer high-end images or longer battery life, but not both. Cranking up the visual detail burns through the battery. Reducing power consumption generally means graphics that aren’t as sharp.

The answer, then, according to the company at least, is to move processing to the cloud as the next logical step.

Read more: AT&T commits to $ 200 million investment in IoT start-ups

Where cloud comes in

The cloud computing model of service-based application delivery and data storage, processing and analytics is widely agreed to be a logical step not just for edge computing, but for the majority of IT deployments. Where AT&T may be offering additional insight is in the expertise it can draw from its heritage in network transmission technologies.

The company says that in today’s networks, physical distances between users and data centers creates latency. As requests and responses travel hundreds or thousands of miles, users often notice the delay.

“With edge computing, we’ll install graphics processors and other computers in cell towers, small cells and other parts of our network that are never more than a few miles from our customers. This is what’s known as the edge of the network. In addition, low latency is being built into 5G from the get-go. The result: you will be able to run high-end applications in the cloud, and it will feel like it’s all happening right on your device,” said the company.

Read more: Elemental Machines uses AT&T IoT tech to make lab equipment smarter

An Agile approach

Developers and other third parties will be invited to test and innovate at AT&T’s Palo Alto-based edge computing and, as with all R&D work, success is never guaranteed. But the company says its rapid innovation model (as in, Agile with a capital A) means it can move on quickly when an approach isn’t panning out and apply lessons learned to future projects.

“Our goal in this experiment is to find the right architecture, the right services and the right business value in this ecosystem,” said Igal Elbaz, head of AT&T Foundry. “It’s all about moving quickly and collaborating closely with third-party innovators and developers.”

Read more: AT&T delivers progress report on LTE-M rollout in Mexico

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Internet of Business

Moving Beyond the Silicon Valley State of Mind

To steal a phrase from Anton Chekhov, the great danger of the Age of the Algorithm is that we will know everything and understand nothing. In his new book Sensemaking, a polemic defending the need for the liberal arts in business, Christian Madsbjerg, a founder of strategic consulting company ReD Associates based in Copenhagen and New York, argues that leaders shouldn’t try to know everything. Instead, they should try to make sense of something.

Madsbjerg offers up sensemaking as the antidote to algorithmic thinking — “a Silicon Valley state of mind” that relies exclusively on data for direction. Relying on data alone is taking “a journey determined by the reductions of a GPS,” according to the author. Sensemaking is the North Star: It provides the essential context for data — the rationale for collecting it and the perspective needed to gain insight from it.

In the excerpt below, Madsbjerg tells the story of Napa Valley’s Cathy Corison, comparing her approach to wine making with the data-driven approach of Leo McCloskey, founder of Sonoma, California-based Enologix, Inc., to illustrate the difference between traveling by the North Star and the GPS.


MIT Sloan Management Review

Waymo tests self-driving minivans in Death Valley

waymo-minivan

Self-driving cars are going to be fitted with a whole lot of sensors, chips, and other electronics, so it makes sense to check that all of this works in extreme environments.

That’s why Waymo sent its self-driving Chrysler Pacifica minivans to California’s Death Valley this summer, which has the highest recorded temperature in the world, at 134F.

See Also: Google narrows case against Uber as court date nears

Waymo had already conducted “extensive tests” in an aerothermal wind tunnel prior to the trip, which is able to mimic extreme heat and cold. After almost a year of controlled environment tests, it gave the green light to the heat-seeking journey.

The minivan took a road trip from Davis Dam to Las Vegas to Death Valley, testing the car at each step of the way. Davis Dam has steep desert roads, Las Vegas has long waits in traffic, and Death Valley is the ultimate extreme heat test.

From Tahoe to the desert

Automakers have conducted extreme weather tests for decades, but the self-driving car provides more worries, as most of the electronics produce their own heat. Waymo did not say if it has added any other features to the car to reduce the heat or better ventilate the car.

Waymo carried out similar tests at low temperatures in Lake Tahoe earlier this year.

Even though the self-driving cars are not for sale, Waymo is letting people test the cars in Phoenix, Arizona. Before too long, that may turn into a ride-sharing or shuttle platform, available in many U.S. cities. It may be looking to have everything covered before riders start paying for their rides.

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ReadWrite

Could Taiwan become the Silicon Valley of Agriculture 4.0?

Flat tractor on white background. Red tractor icon - vector illustration. Agricultural tractor - transport for farm in flat style. Farm tractor icon. Tractor icon vector illustration.

Taiwan has in the past been synonymous with toy manufacturing and electrical components, but a growing revolution in agriculture is set to give the sweet-potato-shaped island a new area of influence in the global economy.

With a Mandarin speaking populace and geographical location that is less than two hours from Shanghai, Taiwan is also the perfect base for companies looking to profit in the lucrative Chinese market.

There is now an active push to promote Taiwan as a hub for Agriculture 4.0. There are few places in the world that are better suited for developing smart farming devices and large-scale precision agriculture projects than Taiwan.

What is Agriculture 4.0?

Precision farming, or Agriculture 4.0, refers to systems that employ drones, robotics, Internet of Things (IoT), vertical farms, artificial intelligence (AI), and solar energy.

Through the integration of digital technology into farming practices, companies are able to increase yields, reduce costs, experience less crop damage and minimize water, fuel and fertilizer usage. For the consumer this equals cheaper and better quality food.

So, imagine a farm not unlike what exists across the world today, but with increased automation and smart technologies that are able to detect the needs of crops and deliver those necessities automatically.

Why Taiwan?

Nearly all of the skills  and components needed for Agriculture 4.0 can be found in Taiwan, a place that although small in size, boasts the largest number of electrical engineers per capita in the world. Taiwan produces 25% of the world’s semiconductors, and is a manufacturer for most of the sensors used in IoT and smart farming projects.

It is also a major player in robotics, drones and the global leader in solar cells. The growth in indoor farming as a more productive alternative to traditional farms, is proving to be a boon for the LED industry in Taiwan, the second largest in the world. A number of indoor farming companies have branched out of the LED sector and can offer full intelligent indoor farming and hydroponic solution.

Check out the infographic from HWTrek to find out why you should be betting the farm on Taiwanese agtech in 2017.

Taiwan Infographic Agriculture

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