As Quartz has already reported, the Internet of Things is already here, and in the not too distant future it will replace the Web. Many enabling technologies have arrived which will make the Internet of things ubiquitous, and thanks to smartphones, the public is finally ready to accept that it will become impossible to escape from the Internet’s all-seeing eye.
But a critical piece of the Internet of things puzzle remains to be solved. What engineers lack is a universal glue to bind all the of the “things” in the Internet of things to each other and to the cloud.
To understand how important these standards will be, it helps to know a bit about the history of the Web. When the Internet was born, it was a mishmash of now mostly-forgotten protocols designed to accomplish different tasks—gopher for retrieving documents, FTP for sending and receiving files, and no standard for social networking other than email. Then the Web came along and unified those protocols, and made them accessible to non-geeks. All of this magic was possible because the Internet is built on open standards: transparent, agreed-upon ways that devices should communicate with one another and share data.