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W3C Workshop on the Web of Things

Enablers and services for an open Web of Devices

25–26 June 2014, Berlin, Germany


W3C gratefully acknowledges Siemens, for hosting this workshop.


Thanks also to support from the European Union through the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2013-2015) under grant agreement n° 317862 - Compose. Compose

Important dates

10 May 2014:
Deadline for expressions of
interest or position papers
for possible presentation
(via email)

7 June 2014:
Program and position papers posted on the workshop website

13 June 2014:
Deadline for registration
(statement of interest required,
no participation fee)

25-26 June 2014:

The workshop is free, although you will need to submit an brief expression of interest or a longer position paper. See How to participate.


It is common to think about the Internet of Things from the perspective of sensors and transport protocols, but you can also think about it from the point of view of services, which is where most of the money is expected to be made:

This of course will depend on open standards to get us out of the current fragmentation where companies are working in isolated silos:

Web technologies are expected to be very important, e.g. JavaScript and open standards for data formats, interface definitions, access control and so forth:

Continuing advances in electronics have dramatically reduced the cost for devices functioning as tags, sensors and actuators for the physical environment, i.e. the Internet of Things (IoT). The market potential for the IoT is currently held back by fragmentation due to a plethora of communication technologies and the lack of a common approach to enabling services.

This workshop will examine the potential for open standards as a basis for services, either between devices, at the network edge, e.g. in home hubs, or in the cloud. It will discuss the use of web protocols and scripting languages for implementing services, the need for APIs for implementing drivers for specific IoT technologies, a shared approach to describing services as a basis for interoperability, and the underlying use of HTTP/COAP, Web Sockets, and EXI/JSON for RESTful services.

Web of Things domains

There is a very wide range of application domains, and the following is just a sample:

  • Home automation and extended warranties
  • Security for homes, businesses and public settings
  • Healthcare at home and in hospitals
  • Manufacturing, construction and retail
  • Transportation: cars, buses, metro, trains
  • Utilities: electricity, water, gas, drainage
  • Energy efficiency, smart appliances and the smart grid
  • Managing emergencies: floods, fires, earthquakes and civil disturbances

The Web of Things is expected to have broad and sweeping economic and societal impact. Open standards will be critical to enabling exponential growth of the kind we experienced with the early days of the Web, that saw it growing from a handful of enthusiasts in the early nineties to a global phenomenon in just a few years.

Workshop Topics

Core Technologies
  • What are the foundational technologies and how will these be expected to evolve?
Domain Challenges
  • What are the challenges for particular domains of use and how would open standards help?
From Things to the Web of Things
  • What runtime environment is needed for services on devices.
  • The role of scripting from microcontrollers to super computers.
  • What kinds of APIs are needed for implementing device drivers?
  • What is needed for locally installed applications and services.
  • How to bridge firewalls and network address translation?
  • How to address provisioning and management of devices and services?
  • How to describe and bind services into a web of coupled services?
The Role of Semantics
  • Interpreting sensor input, and determining how to control actuators is very much dependent on the context and access to accurate up to date information, for instance, descriptions of people, places, tasks and things.
  • Semantics are key to ensuring interoperability, e.g. as a basis for describing physical units. What is needed to encourage use of common vocabularies and how should these be standardized?
  • What is the relationship between services and the Web of data?
Security, Trust and Privacy
  • Systems of identifiers for people, devices, services and applications.
  • The role of identity providers in enabling the Web of Trust.
  • Proactive measures such as encryption, authentication, access control, and approaches for handling privacy and provenance.
  • Retroactive measures such as monitoring, defense in depth, graceful degradation in the presence of faults, and mechanisms for isolating and limiting the effects of attacks.
  • Social relationships between people, devices, services and applications.
User Interfaces
  • What is needed for the next generation of user interfaces for the Web of Things?
  • What are the challenges and potential solutions for scalable services, and how do these vary according to the domain of use?
  • Extracting meaning from progressive interpretation of ambiguous or noisy data in combination with access to contextual information, including goals and current priorities.
  • Mapping high level intent to coordinated and synchronized control of actuators.
Open Markets
  • What is needed to enable open markets of services, e.g. payments, discovery, reviews, reputation, developer tools and so forth?

bridging service based upon JavaScript, JSON and JSON-LD
Illustration of services based upon JavaScript, JSON and JSON-LD.

Who Should Attend?

  • Organizations interested in realizing use cases for the Web of Things
  • Web developers with an experience of creating IoT platforms, applications and services
  • Device vendors seeking to expand their market potential
  • Network operators with an interest in M2M and scalable communications services
  • Cloud platform vendors interested in hosting services for the Web of Things
  • System integrators and consultancies with an interest in helping their clients with designing and deploying applications and services based upon the Web of Things
  • Governments and regulatory agencies interested in enabling open markets for the Web of Things, and the associated challenges for security and privacy