GE Predix Seeks to Do Something with All that IoT Data

Carl Weinschenk

The Internet of Things basically boils down to billions – someday trillions – of tiny sensors and other devices producing little bits of information. A huge issue will be figuring out how to manage and transform all that data into something useful.

GE is taking its shot. It announced at its Minds & Machines conference that it is making its Predix machine data analytics generally available. It had, according to InformationWeek, been reserved for GE customers until now.

The potential for the utility industry – the first target of the software – is great. It is also a harbinger of what the platform and others like it can do elsewhere:

Managing a new generating plant designed to operate on the IoT would add $230 million to its value over the life of the plant compared to the preceding generation, GE estimated.

The software, according to the story, aims to “capture hundreds or thousands of gigabytes of data daily, then sort, cleanse, and load the data for further use.” A GE executive said that in the case of utilities, Predix will collect data on a sub-second basis, stream it to the cloud and analyze it to “predict and prevent” failure of industrial machines.

A Serious Threat to Android

Dark Reading has a story on what appears to be a significant vulnerability in Android. Stagefright 2.0 Vuln affects almost all Android devices – more than 1 billion -- with the most serious impact on Lollipop (Android version 5.0) and later.

Stagefright 2.0 Vuln attacks multimedia engines and is “easy to exploit, enables remote privileged code execution, requires no user interaction…” The vulnerability was discovered by Zimperium Mobile Threat Protection.

Weave Enables Home Networking Without Wi-Fi

Network World’s story on Nest’s new application layer, Weave, makes the point that the real winners in the home networking category will be those that provide a platform that serves the entire premise, not vendors of individual services.

That’s undoubtedly a good point, and one of the drivers of Weave. It enables direct interactions between devices without going through the cloud. The main beneficiaries are services that are fast, low energy and need to work when Wi-Fi is unavailable.

The story says that Nest already uses Weave. Yale Locks’ Linus lock is the first outside adopter of the technique. It is set to go on sale in early 2016.


Google and Others Going After Quantum Computing

InformationWeek reported this week that NASA, the Universities of Space Research Association and Google have renewed their contract with D-Wave, a Canadian company. The attraction is great because quantum computers, if they are commercialized, will be orders of magnitude faster than even the fastest supercomputer.

Curtis Franklin implies that a quantum computer could answer questions that are not even attempted with the current computer technology:

With all the problems, why pursue quantum computing and write checks for a solution that might or might not be the solution you're looking for? The first reason is the speed mentioned at the top of this article. The other is that quantum architecture allows researchers to use computers to solve problems that are structurally unsolvable by classic, binary computers. There are a fair number of those problems out there and many people would love to see them finally solved.

Experian Hacked

Credit services firm Experian has suffered a major hack, according to CNNMoney. The theft focused on people who applied for postpaid plans from T-Mobile USA between Sept. 1, 2013, and Sept. 16, 2015. The total number of people affected is believed to be about 15 million.

Personal information including names, address, Social Security numbers, birthdays and other sensitive data was compromised. The theft occurred last month.

Carl Weinschenk covers telecom for IT Business Edge. He writes about wireless technology, disaster recovery/business continuity, cellular services, the Internet of Things, machine-to-machine communications and other emerging technologies and platforms. He also covers net neutrality and related regulatory issues. Weinschenk has written about the phone companies, cable operators and related companies for decades and is senior editor of Broadband Technology Report. He can be reached at and via twitter at @DailyMusicBrk.

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