Computer Information Science (CIS) students from the HCT-Ras Al Khaimah Women’s campus (RKW) have been introduced to an Internet of Things (IoT) course for Smart Cities.
This was the first time students interacted with electronic components like microcontroller, sensors, resisters, led lights, and cables, resulting in them designing two innovative ideas for smart cities. Firstly, smart plant watering system. This system allows home owners to monitor the humidity, temperature, and water of their plants remotely through a mobile app. The data is uploaded from plants to Thing Speak cloud and then downloaded to the user’s mobile app in real time. The user also has the option to water the plants with click of a button.
The other innovative project is Park Assist which assists drivers parking cars in shopping malls, and allows the managers to remotely monitor the available parking. This is an innovative idea as its future expansion will include integrating the parking billing with the Park Assist project. In this case as well, the parking data is uploaded to the cloud, and then monitored via mobile App.
Internet of Things is poised to revolutionize the way world functions; by interconnecting billions of devices together. Devices will be connected for a range of different purposes including surveillance and monitoring, communication, information exchange, tracking, and managing other devices termed as ‘Things’.
While this will create many opportunities for economy, businesses, industries, and the government, it has already started to present huge challenges in several domains including but not limited to communication protocols, security infrastructure and its standardization, single points of failure, and Middleware. These are the challenges that have to be discussed and resolved first before the “things” are connected. However, once they are addressed, the focus must shift towards the utilization of the huge potential of IoT.