W3C Web of Things IG meeting in Beijing, 11-14 July 2016

DSC_0069_480x360Beginning of July 2016, the W3C Web of Things Interest Group met in Beijing, China, with a broad range of participants from 25 different companies and institutions. The face-to-face meeting was hosted by the China Electronics Technology Group  Corporation (CETC), the China IoT Industry Technology Innovation Strategic Alliance (CIoTA), and the W3C host at Beihang University. The event was also co-located with the CIoTA’s 2016 International Open IoT Technology and Standard Summit.

The first two days were open to local companies and institutions. We learned about CETC’s vision of IoT interoperability and enjoyed live demonstrations encompassing many things such as air purifiers, car controllers, and talking robots as well as the cloud-based E-Harbour IoT platform implemented by Beijing Wuliangang Ltd.

The Beijing meeting was also a milestone for the W3C WoT activities, as for the first time, all envisioned building blocks came to life in our so-called PlugFest. Multiple companies brought their prototypes, which we then interconnected in different cross-company, cross-domain collaboration scenarios. We successfully tested a running Web of Things made of

PlugFest

  • Air conditioners
  • Classic Raspberry Pi with extension shields
  • Industrial automation controller
  • Generic BACnet gateway
  • Table fan
  • Window curtains
  • Wireless sensor nodes
  • WoT-enabled Web browser
  • Several scripted WoT apps exposing virtual Things

The PlugFest scenarios now covered all building blocks

  • All devices registered their semantic Thing Description in a repository that allows SPARQL lookups
  • The participating Things had Protocol Bindings for HTTP, CoAP, BACnet, and Lemonbeat
  • The WoT-enabled Web browser as well as the industrial controller offered the Scripting API for dynamic mashups written in JavaScript

The highlights were probably

  • A WoT app running in the browser to interact with Things using UI elements generated from the Thing Description
  • A smartphone running a Servient that allows WoT-based access to off-the-shelf Bluetooth devices
  • A wireless sensor node doing a semantic lookup to find our comfort voter and participating in the vote based on its temperature sensor
  • A portable script moved to the industrial controller to control an air conditioner in Japan
  • A semantic rule engine to control window curtains from a wireless brightness sensor
  • Mashing up a BACnet controller and KNX room unit with a fan over Lemonbeat, an LED matrix over HTTP, and the voting sensor node over CoAP

This time, on-site participation was difficult for some of the previous PlugFest participants. Thus, we decided to move future PlugFests further toward remote participation and make reference implementations available online. Any implementer is invited to join to explore the current practices and to help leading the WoT activities into the right direction!

Participants

The next face-to-face meeting of the Interest Group will be in Lisbon, Portugal on 22-23 September 2016 as part of the W3C annual get together (TPAC 2016).

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