IBM and Cisco Plan to Apply Watson to IoT Data

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    As part of an effort to reduce the overhead associated with deploying Internet of Things (IoT) applications, IBM and Cisco today announced the formation of an alliance that promises to bring Watson analytics to the edge of the network.

    The approach will enable companies to apply Watson analytics to data as it gets collected rather than having to continually transport data back to a central repository to be analyzed.

    Harriet Green, general manager for IBM Watson Internet of Things, says this approach will both lower costs and enable IoT applications to be less dependent on spotty network coverage. The analytics processed locally on a Cisco switch can then be streamed to a central repository that will enable that aggregated data to be compared and contrasted with analytics data gathered from other IoT endpoints, says Green.

    While there’s general agreement that IoT represents an enormous opportunity, not many organizations are quite sure how best to go about tapping into it. Beyond where processing of IoT data should take place, there’s also a lot of uncertainty over the roles people in IT will play in collecting, processing and analyzing IoT data.

    Obviously, operations staff have the inside track when it comes to collecting data, but when it comes to analyzing massive amounts of data, more traditional IT organizations tend to have more experience. The real challenge facing most organizations is going to be getting those two groups to work together, as opposed to pretty much ignoring each other the way most of them do now.

    Mike Vizard
    Mike Vizard
    Michael Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist, with nearly 30 years of experience writing and editing about enterprise IT issues. He is a contributor to publications including Programmableweb, IT Business Edge, CIOinsight and UBM Tech. He formerly was editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise, where he launched the company’s custom content division, and has also served as editor in chief for CRN and InfoWorld. He also has held editorial positions at PC Week, Computerworld and Digital Review.

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