I attended yesterday the Idea Challenge of the EIT ICT Labs in Stockholm focussing on Internet of Things.
Many interesting ideas, as well as several presentations from start ups. Out of these I have been impressed by the slogan of one of them, Connode: The device is the network.
The solution proposed by Connode is based on a mesh network formed by devices. Provided a sufficient dense ambient (the devices are sufficiently close to one another so that a communication link can be established) the network provides connectivity among all devices and between any of them and the big public network (as long as a few of these devices are within reach of a network gateway).
In a mesh network the more nodes you have and the more robust and relabel the network is. If one node (device) fails there are others that will maintaining connectivity viable.
Connode 4 is offering a server as back end system where applications can be managed and run and agents that can be embedded in the various devices whose only task is to hook the device on the mesh network.
The beauty of the system is its simplicity. It is clearly intended to enable Internet of things where thousands of things will need to hook up on the network and you don't want to be concerned on individual connectivity. Mesh networks are ideal for this. Besides, the power budget, provided that there are many devices connected, is decreasing as the vicinity of devices allows for smaller hops (it cost more to transmit than to process information and the transmission power budget grows exponentially as the hop length increases).
Pretty nice to see that "things" can seamlessly assemble into structures that support communications.