7 May 2009

Daniel Kaplan’s excellent critique of the Internet of Things

Be the first to share

Daniel Kaplan
Daniel Kaplan, CEO of the French Next-Generation Internet Foundation (FING) and one of the driving forces behind the upcoming LIFT conference in Marseilles, France, has published three long essays with an excellent critique of the Internet of Things.

If you understand French, they are highly recommended reading. Otherwise, check the links as they often lead to English-language background resources.

In the first article, L’internet des objets n’est pas celui que vous croyez ! [“The Internet of Things is not what you think”], Kaplan describes the various visions of the Internet of Things, and the role of us, human beings, within these visions. Kaplan is worried as these technologies are taking controls and power away from the individual, which is exactly the opposite of what the internet set out to do, and therefore the Internet of Things carries no transformational vision.

But Kaplan goes further. His second piece, Révolution ou déception ? [“Revolution or deception?”], positions that the “Internet of Things” is not all what its name implies. It’s not even an internet, not technically, not socially, not economically. The way “things” are currently networked is entirely within silos — in terms of applications, services and organisations — and this has nothing to do with the view on pervasive interconnectedness that the inter-net concept contains. He also elaborates on what he means with the lack of transformational vision. Where the Internet always came with visions of social and cultural transformation, the Internet of Things is just nice-nice: we don’t hear anything but service, comfort, optimisation, health, reliability, sustainability, quality and security, usually performed by others on our behalf. If there is a vision, it is one of a control society.

In the closing piece Industrialiser l’internet ou internetiser l’industrie ? [“Industrialise the Internet or internetise the industry?”], Kaplan outlines a vision for an entirely different Internet of Things, which is open, modifiable, recyclable, social and evolutionary, and claims that a real “Internet of Things” will be driven by the thinking of such people as Julian Bleecker, Usman Haque and Bruce Sterling, and by cultures such as those of open source hardware (Arduino) or the fabrication movement (“Bricolabs”).

The first article in the series got republished in the technology section of the French newspaper Le Monde, and it looks like the others will soon follow.

Hubert Guillaud of InternetActu told me that these papers will soon be translated into English for the LiftBlog and when that happens, we will let you know here too.

Be the first to share
1 May 2016
Report: User Experience and Usability in Complex Systems
User Experience and Usability in Complex Systems Final Report 1/2015 FIMECC (Finnish Metals and Engineering Competence Cluster) November 2015, 225 pages Five years ago, some of Finland’s metals and engineering industry companies were looking for new ways to tackle …
30 April 2016
The Internet of Things needs design, not just technology
Scott A. Nelson and Paul Metaxatos write that, as B2C companies rush to exploit new IoT applications, pushing technology to potential end users no longer works. Increasingly, the pull of user experience will drive market …
21 April 2016
The product design of IoT
As more and more ‘Internet of Things’ products come into the market, most, if not all will come with significant challenges. The key to overcoming any obstacles, writes Joe Johnston, VP Experience Innovation for Universal …
2 April 2016
A selection of Interaction 16 videos
In this post we highlight a number of Interaction 16 conference videos especially relevant to the Putting People First readers. They are grouped thematically. Algorithm-inspired design Crowds, algorithms and computations: The new materials of design - Matthew …
16 February 2016
Experts fear wearables going down path of misguided user research
A recent study showed that in early wearable app development, the lack of identifying the user scenarios resulted in too much focus on technology and neglecting the users, writes Jennifer Elias in Forbes. "The people in …
29 January 2016
[Report] Consumers more frustrated by smart home apps than devices
New report by Argus Insights suggests disappointing apps break user experience, may cause decline in consumer delight over time. The Smart Home ecosystem comprises both hardware devices and software apps and together they are supposed to …
28 January 2016
The Power of Privacy – documentary film
In this half-hour film (commissioned by The Guardian and Silent Circle), Aleks Krotoski travels the world to undergo challenges that explore our digital life in the 21st century. Watch her be stalked and hacked, fight to …
27 January 2016
Human-machine interactions and the coming age of autonomy
Melissa Cefkin is a Principal Scientist & Design Anthropologist at Nissan Research in Silicon Valley where she explores the potential of having autonomous vehicles as interactive agents in the world. In an article that was published …

We are an international experience design consultancy helping companies and organisations to innovate their products, services and processes by putting people and their experiences first.

12 April 2016
The latest on innovation in Energy Efficient Buildings: annual round-up of EU Commission projects

Every year, the Energy-efficient Buildings (EeB) Public Private Partnership (PPP) publishes the EeB PPP project review – a round-up of energy-efficiency projects that have been co-funded by two European Commission schemes. This year, the print and digital booklet design was done by Experientia, in particular by our talented visual and interaction designer Dohun Jang. Experientia […]

8 March 2016
Behavioral modeling – Shaping cultural change and behavioral evolution

One of the things we do here at Experientia that really sets us apart from other UX agencies is behavioral modeling. Our cognitive and behavioral models go beyond the standard customer journeys and personas (both useful tools, and often preliminary steps to behavioral modeling) to create frameworks that can be used to make people more […]

1 March 2016
Singapore’s main newspaper on Experientia’s design with the elderly

Arti Mulchand reports in the Straits Times, Singapore’s main newspaper, on Experientia’s “Design for Ageing Gracefully” project: Putting faces to end-users early in the design process is changing the way designers and organisations are approaching products aimed at Singapore’s growing elderly demographic. Experientia’s ethnographic study, which was commissioned by DesignSingapore Council in a collaboration with […]

18 January 2016
Experientia website completely reshaped

Experientia is pleased to announce that we’ve started 2016 with a brand new website. Experientia’s now officially 10 years old, and we decided that the best way to celebrate is by building a new website that showcases our growth – with new projects, new people in the staff, and two new locations in Lausanne and […]

1 January 2016
For when things get personal…
13 October 2015
Experientia report: Design for ageing gracefully

Design for Ageing Gracefully Rethinking Health and Wellness for the Elderly: Public Services Asian Insights & Design Innovation, DesignSingapore Council October 2015

See all articles