Thing in the future

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Defining Thing in the future

Thing in the future is a platform that consolidates and mediates information used by Internet of Things applications from various data sources (IoT networks, open data repositories, etc.).
Thing in the future is built upon a graph database that represents and maintains comprehensive and curated context information and knowledge about Internet of Things systems and environments, at multiple scales.

As a multi-sided platform, Thing in the future is intended to be used jointly by different categories of stakeholders :

  • Owners and suppliers of "things" (ranging from devices to multi-level systems) may create within Thing’in "avatars" (digital representatives) of these, describe the relationships between these things and their environments, and the means for accessing them.
  • IoT Applications that use information about these things make up another side of the platform
  • Developers of third-party tools called enablers

A software building block that interfaces to the Thing core database, providing complementary capabilities, such as data 2D or 3D visualization of the graph , import from various data sources and third-party platforms, export in various formats, etc.)

Thing in the future complements them and may use them as data sources. Thing in the future does not directly store the same kind of low-level data (such as sensor readings) as these platforms may do.

  • The nodes (vertices) of the Thing’in graph are the avatars (in the sense of informational representatives) of all kinds of physical entities which they represent, be they devices, things or systems
  • The arcs (directed edges) of the graph represent physically-based relationships between these entities. Examples are :
    • device D isContainedIn room R
    • building B hasPart room R
    • room R isAdjacentTo corridor C
    • camera C monitors room R
  • Properties (key-value attributes) may be associated with both avatars and relationships (nodes and arcs of the graph). Examples are :
    • room R State empty
    • room R area x m2
    • building B ConstructionDate 2017
  • The Thing graph belongs to the general class of “Property Graphs”, a special kind of directed “attributed” multigraphs used by most graph databases.