The trend towards open standards and easier access to technologies seems to be gaining ground. Could it really be that archrivals are working together for the good of all; or is it a conspiracy and another step towards Big Brother? Either way, a couple of standouts might sweeten the speed to adoption, and in the case of one, skip the need to buy new equipment. One big announcement will certainly get everyone thinking.
Really Big Things Happening
Could IBM’s Watson Internet of Things (IoT) be poised to be one of the biggest disruptors and/or enablers for the AV industry? The convergence of AV and IT might start sounding like child’s play.
According to its December 15, 2015 release, IBM announced the opening of its global headquarters for Watson Internet of Things (IoT), and launching a series of new offerings, capabilities and ecosystem partners designed to extend the power of cognitive computing to the billions of connected devices, sensors and systems that comprise the IoT. Through the IBM Watson IoT Cloud, the company’s global platform for IoT, these offerings will be made available to business and developers.
IBM also will deliver Watson APIs and services on the Watson IoT Cloud Platform to accelerate the development of cognitive IoT solutions and services, helping clients and partners make sense of the growing volume and variety of data in a physical world that is rapidly becoming digitized.
Siemens Building Technologies announced that it is teaming with IBM to bring advanced analytics capabilities together with IBM’s IoT solutions to advance their Navigator platform for energy management and sustainability.
Four families of Watson API services are available as part of a new IBM Watson IoT Analytics offering:
● The Natural Language Processing (NLP) API Family enables users to interact with systems and devices using simple, human language.
● The Machine Learning Watson API Family automates data processing and continuously monitors new data and user interactions to rank data and results based on learned priorities.
● The Video and Image Analytics API Family enables monitoring of unstructured data from video feeds and image snapshots to identify scenes and patterns.
● The Text Analytics API Family enables mining of unstructured textual data including transcripts from customer call centers, maintenance technician logs, blog comments, and tweets to find correlations and patterns in these vast amounts of data.
Simple interaction with systems and devices, automation, video and text analytics—that sounds like a recipe for some great innovations coming from the AV/IT industry.
Jack of All
Could it really be that archrivals of the likes of Apple, Google, Microsoft, and a host of other manufacturers actually worked together on adopting a single technology for the common good? Hail to the USB Type-C Cable and Connector Specification. USB Type-C holds the promise of eliminating the entangled mess of HDMI and VGA cables, power cords, a myriad of USB micro and micro, connectors gracing every conference table.
USB Type-C is a brilliant design. With 100 watts of power, up to 10Gps data, supporting DisplayPort, HDMI, MHL, and Thunderbolt protocols, and identical connectors on each end of the cable, so there’s no fishing around to figure out which end to plug in—the USB C is the jack-of-all.
Join One, Join All
The recent release of Audinate’s, Dante Via software allows a Dante network to be created using only computers, and without the need for dedicated Dante hardware. The benefit? For those applications needing a super cost-effective way to extend audio to non-critical listening areas, Dante Via enables any audio application or device from a computer to be distributed virtually anywhere over the network. The beauty is this includes legacy mixing consoles, microphones, it runs on PCs or Macs, and supports up to a total of 48 sources and 48 designation channels, and stereo I/O for as many as eight simultaneous applications.
Cindy Davis is a contributing editor of AV Technology magazine. @custommediaco
IBM’s Watson Internet of Things