Front Range Community College Blog

What is the Internet of Things (IoT)?

Internet of Things (IoT) can mean different things to different people, depending on the context.

IoT may be implemented on an industrial scale within advanced manufacturing, power grid automation, or smart cities. In the home and for personal appliances, IoT is implemented on a consumer scale. The technologies and disciplines underlying the industrial and consumer IoT are the same: embedded systems connected to the internet to perform a specific task.

IoT in the home

IoT appliances and machines regularly send performance data to the cloud where it will be analyzed to predict potential failures and to schedule preventive maintenance. Big data also may make operations of these appliances and machines more efficient and effective. For example, reduce power consumption and reduce carbon footprint.

Technology preceded the buzz

In high tech, fads come and go. However, in the case of IoT, the technology preceded the buzz. All of a sudden, things that are connected to the internet surrounded us. IoT is ubiquitous, pervasive and essential. Our TVs, cameras, webcams, appliances and thermostats are connected (or soon will be connected) to the internet. This important trend will have a deep and lasting impact on our lives and society.

Where can I learn more about the IoT?

Starting in August, the FRCC Boulder County Campus will offer a course on IoT (CSC 276) . In this course assessment will be based on demonstrating competencies as opposed to taking exams and quizzes.

What subjects are covered in the course on IoT?

Usually, traditional courses focus on a specific area. For example, students may learn about the syntax and semantics of Python, a popular computer language. The course on IoT takes an end-to-end learning approach. You will learn about all the technologies and disciplines required to create an IoT device.

An understanding of a diverse set of technologies and disciplines is required to create a smart IoT device, which makes this course exciting and fun! You will learn about the following technologies and disciplines to create a simple IoT device:

  1. Embedded Systems
  2. Analog and Digital Signal Processing
  3. Interfacing with Sensors and Actuators
  4. Interfacing with Input and OutputĀ Devices
  5. Controlling an IoT Device online through a browser

To enroll as a new student, you can get started here. Otherwise, use eWOLF.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Shahzad Bhatti is a faculty member at Front Range Community College's Boulder County Campus. He held software engineering positions at Samsung, HP, StorageTek and NCR before joining the FRCC faculty. He did his graduate work in computer science at the University of Colorado-Boulder.