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An internet of things economy


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Talk delivered at the Cardiff Digital Festival on September 18th 2017.

Published in: Design
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An internet of things economy

  1. 1. An internet of things economy. Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino @iotwatch
  2. 2. First UK distributor of Arduino. Consultant at designswarm. Founder of Good Night Lamp. Organiser of the London Internet of Things meetup since 2011. Writing a book on smart homes. Steering a bottom-up internet of things certification mark. About me
  3. 3. 1. How to develop the internet of things into positive local economic force for your community. What I’ll talk about today
  4. 4. 2. International conversations to contribute to. What I’ll talk about today
  5. 5. What is the internet of things? Embedding connectivity & electronics where there was none. In new products & existing ones.
  6. 6. What is the internet of things? Don’t think about devices (anything with a screen), industrial applications or cars. They’re already pretty high-tech.
  7. 7. Think about baby bottles, bracelets shelves, keys. What is the internet of things?
  8. 8. Isn’t it all ‘gadgets’? Why does it matter?
  9. 9. Some things are more important, less wasteful, and more relevant than others. It’s the same with #iot. Why does it matter?
  10. 10. Using products creates enough ‘small data’ to help make better decisions. What do they have in common?
  11. 11. These are all UK startups less than 5 years old. What do they have in common?
  12. 12. Men & women between 35-45 Sometimes a tech background, often not. People with a community around them. Who are they?
  13. 13. A community of peers happy to help formally & informally. Some mentor, some become co-founders. They may be involved in manufacturing, supply chain, retail, hardware, software, marketing, finance. What kind of community?
  14. 14. A community with face to face contact. Meetups are a good mechanism for this. Cardiff doesn’t have one! Why not start your own community.
  15. 15. Oxford, Cambridge, Thames Valley, Reading, London, Brighton, Leeds. Globally over 2K meetups. Other meetups in the UK?
  16. 16. What happens when you start an #iot meetup. Academics, investors, entrepreneurs and employed people come to the table. Ideas are shared, a local vision is shaped.
  17. 17. What happens when you start an #iot meetup. An ecology of support & finance starts to emerge.
  18. 18. What happens when you start an #iot meetup. In London we have 10+ maker spaces. 3-4 #iot incubators/accelerators A growing awareness in the investment community. Businesses supporting startups in crowdfunding.
  19. 19. What happens when you start an #iot meetup. Wales is ideally positioned to grow its own community, ecology and solutions.
  20. 20. Build a new breed of local businesses who want to be successful with new tools. What does this do to an economy?
  21. 21. Support new business opportunities for local manufacturing & cottage industries. What does this do to an economy?
  22. 22. It’s a new type of career. How do we build a path for it? How do we get young people excited? Challenges ahead.
  23. 23. Argument for a local STEAM-based curriculum that’s better than others elsewhere. What does this do to an economy?
  24. 24. Help train more technologically-engaged designers & more people-focused & ethically-aware technologists. Help them become local entrepreneurs. What does this do to an economy?
  25. 25. Encourage local government to revisit the impact on GDP of manufacturing & the creative sector. In #iot they are intertwined. What does this do to an economy?
  26. 26. Power multi-disciplinary research in difficult areas of the internet of things. You can become world-leaders in ethical #iot design research for eg. What does this do to an economy?
  27. 27. We are asking some big questions. Difficult questions we should be asking.
  28. 28. How is data handled by a hardware & software company? Thinking beyond GDPR. Difficult questions we should be asking.
  29. 29. How do we encourage entrpreneurs to make secure choices across hardware, firmware & cloud? What conversations should we foster?
  30. 30. How do we encourage open source practices when a company goes bust or is acqui-hired? Nest’s bricking of its sensor platform. What conversations should we foster?
  31. 31. How is a product made when manufacturing is so accessible but most companies still fail? Design for disassembly / Cradle to Cradle What conversations should we foster?
  32. 32. . What does success look like? Fantastic products made in a community who find local support and don’t leave for Silicon Valley.
  33. 33. . What does success look like? Because your community will have challenges that Silicon Valley doesn’t have.
  34. 34. Create a fund dedicated to help early stage internet of things ideas develop and find an audience. How to do it?
  35. 35. Give £150K at a time. Enough to get started. How to do it?
  36. 36. Connect your financial support to other forms of local/national financial support. How to do it?
  37. 37. Don’t send people to crowdfunding unless you don’t want to grow businesses but ideas. How to do it?
  38. 38. Champion those ideas in your local media (the international press coverage is grim). Help your community get behind an entrepreneur and beta test. How to do it?
  39. 39. Focus on free training programs to give people the support they need to have a good idea in the first place. People need to be given permission to be inventors. Engineer is a dirty word in many parts of the UK. How to do it?
  40. 40. This is as much about a supportive culture of local invention as it is about design, engineering & making. If we can value it in food, we can do it in #iot. How to do it?
  41. 41. Start a meetup. Find out what makes a Welsh #iot landscape. Help your young people see it as a career path. Finance it properly if you can. Help an international community of practice grow. Take part in a global conversation. To recap
  42. 42. Diolch. Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino @iotwatch