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IoT news of the week forJune 4, 2021

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Microsoft buys ReFirm Labs for more secure firmware: Microsoft is continuing with its attempts to make enterprise and industrial IoT more integrated with IT security. After purchasing industrial security firm CyberX last year, it has now bought ReFirm, a company that scans and analyzes device firmware. Firmware controls how device hardware runs, and keeping it both up to date and secured can be a challenge in long-lived devices that are connected to the internet. Many companies also assume the firmware on their modules is fine, which leaves them open to supply-chain attacks that the device maker might not learn about until it’s too late. This purchase is a clear sign that Microsoft is trying hard to take a deeper and more comprehensive view of security as its customers connect their industrial and embedded computers. (Microsoft)

Amazon’s Halo can now track your movement health: Remember Amazon’s Halo fitness tracker? Mine’s in a drawer in my bathroom, but if I put it on today I could set it up to track my movements across a series of poses to give me insights into how well I move. This movement analysis is then used to assign specific exercises to help me improve areas where Amazon’s algorithm assesses that I’m weak. I can see this having large benefits for older adults or those suffering from movement disorders, such as Parkinson’s. I also wonder how this technology might play into Amazon’s efforts to keep its warehouse workers healthy or its drivers in better condition. Amazon is walking right up to that creepy line here. (Fast Company)

Ring will stop letting police ask you for videos: When law enforcement officers want to get access to Ring videos, they now have to ask users in a public post in the Neighbors app under a section called “Request for Assistance.” This makes it easier for people in a neighborhood to see what police are asking for while also preventing police from asking an individual for access to their video. This is largely a good change, because it makes it more difficult for police to ask for videos that might have nothing to do with solving a crime, but it also means that law enforcement requests are now done in front of all your neighbors. Users of the app can opt out of seeing any of these requests if they’d like. (CNBC)

Philips Hue has a new app: Signify, the company that makes Philips Hue lights, has redesigned its app, taking a page from the layouts of Apple’s and Google’s respective Home apps. The lights are now represented as small tiles. You now tap for on/off control, and new advanced features such as a multi-user geolocation function means that if you go out while your partner stays home, their lights won’t suddenly shut off. It’s probably wise to get the app into tip-top shape before Matter comes along and lets people control the basics without ever needing to download it. (Engadget)

Golioth raises $ 2.5M for its hardware cloud: Startup Golioth, which I profiled last year, has raised $ 2.5 million to bring its idea of an easy-to-implement series of software services for IoT device developers to fruition. The company was founded by a former Nest engineer who recognized that most companies that want to build IoT devices don’t want to have to spend time figuring out connectivity, device management, and cloud connections. So Golioth does that for them by providing a software development kit that links the device makers’ modules to a series of services that can be hosted in the cloud or on-premise. The service is now in beta and the funding will support its development as it moves to being general available. (Golioth)

Arm wants to make developing for MCUs easier: This week, Arm said it would open source a set of tools for its microcontrollers that will make it easier to develop across the many disparate chip options in the embedded world, and it launched a cloud service to help designers build boards on their desktops. Arm open sourced parts of a vendor-agnostic abstraction layer for MCUs called the Common Microcontroller Software Interface Standard (CMSIS) so designers can reuse code and use common, open tools for validation and integration of MCUs. Arm also announced the Kiel Studio Cloud as a new development environment for designers building MCUs. (Arm)

This is a worthwhile read: No news here, but a very good analysis on how we might be thinking about AI all wrong. More data doesn’t necessarily help us make better decisions, because those decisions rely on people and processes to actually change anything. Which means the chasm between a decision and the desired outcome isn’t so vast because we don’t have the right data, but because we don’t have the right policies in place to bridge that chasm. The post then explains the concept of antifragile AI and why rethinking AI may mean we can use less data and less energy and trust the results more. (OneZero)

The post IoT news of the week forJune 4, 2021 appeared first on Stacey on IoT | Internet of Things news and analysis.

Stacey on IoT | Internet of Things news and analysis


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