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The changing nature of things: getting ready for a connected world.


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Talk given at the Communitech Tech leadership Conference in Kitchener Ontario on May 28th 2015.

Published in: Design
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The changing nature of things: getting ready for a connected world.

  1. 1. The changing nature of things Getting ready for a connected world Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino designswarm @iotwatch
  2. 2. First UK distributor of the Arduino (2007-2010) Product & interaction designer Consultant designswarm Founder Good Night Lamp (2010-now) About me
  3. 3. Clients
  4. 4. IOT London Meetup Master Classes for investors Connected Magazine Know-Cards
  5. 5. Summary We are building a grass-roots revolution in the way we interact with the built environment. We need to be ready to see things we previously chose to ignore. We will need to change the way we do business and interact with customers.
  6. 6. A revolution in making things
  7. 7. The internet of things Ubiquitous connectivity & digital services connected to real world events. Embedding cheap sensors, actuators, connectivity or cloud services in previously “dumb” objects.
  8. 8. •  Hardware components were expensive •  Specialist knowledge & expensive “design for manufacturing” services •  An emerging digital economy •  No hardware funding Before
  9. 9. Now •  Easy access to cheap hardware •  Democratisation of electronics prototyping and product development •  A robust digital economy •  Crowd funding
  10. 10. Easy access to cheap & easy to learn hardware Arduino MiRobot SAM Labs PrimoLittle BitsRaspberry Pi
  11. 11. Has become a corporate revolution Intel Edison Samsung Artik ARM mbed
  12. 12. And national awareness programs BBC Micro
  13. 13. So what are people building?
  14. 14. Knowing your loved ones are safe Glow Caps BleepBleeps LivelyGood Night LampGood Night Lamp Good Night Lamp
  15. 15. Knowing how safe your environment is Air Quality Egg Cube Sensors Japan Geiger Maps
  16. 16. Remotely controlling your world Sonos Nest Philips Hue
  17. 17. Understanding ourselves better Jawbone UP Oral B toothbrush Apple Watch
  18. 18. Understanding how things are made HistoryTag
  19. 19. Are we ready?
  20. 20. Are consumers ready for this? Access to cheap credit, mass production in Asia & mostly free internet services has lowered consumer expectations around the price of every day objects. Connected everyday objects will suffer from this.
  21. 21. We already live in times of fear
  22. 22. Which means we are slow to adopt new ideas 1946 2015
  23. 23. Little Printer Google Glass Project Andiamo Especially when they feel radical or in niche markets.
  24. 24. So we design for what we know even if its invasive
  25. 25. Or controlling
  26. 26. We may come to stigmatise technology
  27. 27. Corporations are looking to own different spaces in the ecology The hardware ideas are built on top of The connectivity used (M2M, GSM, Whitespace) The cloud services (Smart Things, Thingworx)
  28. 28. But things will take time
  29. 29. How do you get involved?
  30. 30. This revolution is full of opportunity •  New ideas and companies to acquire •  New vendors to work with •  New investment opportunities
  31. 31. The economic downturn has been good for #iot •  Freelance electronics engineers are more common •  Smaller design firms are doing interesting things •  Small amounts of investment can go a long way.
  32. 32. Recognise that a product might not be the answer.
  33. 33. The internet of things changes how we do business Giving a consumer access to his data for the life of his ownership of a product Hosting that data beyond the company’s life Exposing the data roots and third party relationships
  34. 34. And how we treat our customers Knowing every time a customer stops using your product and leaves in a drawer. Maintaining a direct relationship with your customer for the life of the product (10+ years) Being responsible for its ultimate disposal & recycling
  35. 35. But this is where legislation is heading.
  36. 36. So what can I do now? •  Explore new ideas internally with small prototypes first before reaching out to large vendors. Buy some Arduino kits. •  Expose yourself to what’s happening, hire creative technologists, read •  Grow a local meetup.
  37. 37. Read up Everyware, Adam Greenfield Smart things, Bruce Sterling Designing the Internet of things, Adrian McEwen UX for Connected Products, Claire Rowland
  38. 38. And remember Recognise the complex relationships that people have with the built environment. Design for incremental changes in behaviour and long lasting relationships. Consider new ownership models (design for disassembly & second hand markets).
  39. 39. Because ultimately we cannot completely design out human error.
  40. 40. Or humans.
  41. 41. Thank you and good luck Merci et bonne chance @iotwatch