IBM, Eurotech Propose Paho Open Source Project for 'Internet of Things'

3 minute read
Rikki Endsley avatar

IBM and Eurotech submitted a proposal to the Eclipse Foundation open source community for a device connectivity solution that would connect smart objects with physical world systems.

The proposal says that by 2020, the number of connected physical world devices should be in the range of 50 billion, with a 1000x increase in wireless broadband traffic. "Whether looked at as an Internet of Things or a Smarter Planet, people, systems and objects will increasingly need to communicate and interact with each other in ways that today, cannot yet be entirely anticipated," the proposal explains.

Smarter Future

Proprietary models, custom protocols and industry standards currently drive how smart objects and physical world systems are integrated with enterprise and web middleware, but under the new proposal, an open messaging technology is the future.

Physical world meets machines

Physical world meets machines

With the new technology, sensor-based systems would connect to public and private systems. The example used in the proposal is a water main break. Sensors already alert city officials about the break, and with the technology envisioned for 2020, transit systems would also be alerted so they could adjust routes accordingly and commuters would be notified of the new routes at the same time.

Open source messaging components are needed that can cater to the serendipitous nature of data and events from the physical world around us, accelerating and opening new markets. These components will of course have to support the open messaging models prevalent on the Web. They will have to meet high volume, low latency transaction requirements expected by Enterprise IT.At the same time, they will have to work equally well across the constrained networks and embedded platforms that are inherent to physical world of machine-to-machine systems.This will enable a paradigm shift from legacy point-to-point protocols and the limitations of protocols like SOAP or HTTP into more loosely coupled yet determinable models. It will bridge the SOA, REST, Pub/Sub and other middleware architectures already well understood by Web 2.0 and Enterprise IT shops today, with the embedded and wireless device architectures inherent to M2M [machine to machine]."

Eclipse Foundation

The Eclipse Foundation was selected for the Paho Project because of its focus on open tooling, runtimes, frameworks, standards and software architecture.

Learning Opportunities

Eclipse is celebrating "10 Years of Innovation" at EclipseCon Europe this week, and announced its M2M Industry Working Group on Tuesday.

Typical M2M configuration

Typical M2M configuration

Obviously, it's no coincidence that IBM and Eurotech are also founding members of the M2M Industry Working Group, which is open to any organization interested in machine-to-machine solutions. Sierra Wireless, also a founding member of the group, made the first contribution to the group's first project. The Koneki project's goal is to provide M2M-solution developers with tools for developing, simulating, testing and deploying M2M solutions. Sierra Wireless provided an embedded development environment for the Lua programming language.

Under the Paho project proposal, the initial release of MQTT Java and C client code is scheduled for November 28, 2011, with a stable release by December 16.