If (My Building) Only Had a Brain

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Pause for a second and think about all of the buildings you were in yesterday, this week, and this month. Were you in an office building? Restaurant? Retail store? Theater? Hotel? Museum? Grocery store?

Now consider all of the other people (each of whom is a moving heat generator, oxygen consumer and carbon dioxide emitter*) that entered and exited those buildings yesterday, this week, and this month. How about this year? Consider the varied outdoor conditions of all four seasons. Or even the varied conditions throughout a single day – with the sun, clouds, wind, humidity, precipitation, all constantly changing …

Believe your connected system is “smart”? Think again.

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The projected growth of the Internet of Things would have made Carl Sagan proud: “billions and billions” of devices and sensors, capable of communicating via the Internet. It is exciting to consider the benefits of being able to remotely communicate with each of these sensors and get access to important data. Benefits can range from improving operation of elevators or large air conditioning equipment, to ensuring wind turbines or solar farms in a remote area operate safely with no down time.

Merely connecting sensors to create a network only constitutes a nervous system. But are these connected systems “smart”? …